Cutting taxes to boost UK’s low birth rate: Campaigners are trying to reverse the drop in the number of Britons getting married and having children
- Marriage Foundation calls for tax overhaul to help married parents
- The number of newlyweds fell by 16% between 2010 and 2019
- While the population is larger than ever, growth has slowed over the past decade
- Liz Truss has pledged to review family taxation if she becomes Prime Minister
Taxes should be cut in a bid to raise birth rates, campaigners said.
The Marriage Foundation, a pro-family think tank, is calling on the government to overhaul the tax system to try to reverse the decline in the number of people getting married and having children.
Current figures indicate a steady downward trend in the number of young couples marrying, with a 16% drop between 2010 and 2019.
Current figures show a steady downward trend in the number of young couples getting married, with a 16% drop between 2010 and 2019. The Marriage Foundation is calling on the government to review the tax system to help married couples.
Tory leadership candidate Liz Truss has pledged to carry out an immediate family tax review if she becomes Prime Minister on September 5
Meanwhile, census data shows that although the population is bigger than ever in England and Wales, its growth has slowed, from 7.8% between 2001 and 2011 to 6.3% during the following decade.
Latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show the Covid crisis has also had an effect on the number of marriages and baby births across the country.
Now the Marriage Foundation has called on political leaders to consider introducing family-friendly initiatives already in place in other parts of Europe.
Policy analysis in Hungary reveals that a reduction in income tax is offered to parents of two or three children, while those with four children are completely exempt.
Meanwhile, married couples can qualify for a one-time payment of £28,000 if they promise to have three children in the future.
There is also a subsidized residential loan of £40,000 which is available to all parents of three children and married couples who say they will have children in the future.
According to a report by the Marriage Foundation, “the consequences of this decade-long family policy are striking.”
Although the population is larger than ever in England and Wales, its growth has slowed from 7.8% between 2001 and 2011 to 6.3% over the following decade.
Fertility rates are thought to have risen from 1.25 to 1.59 births per woman in Hungary, just above the EU average.
Former Chancellor Sajid Javid has insisted the public is ‘demanding new attention to the issue’ – adding that the UK could learn from Germany, which applies income splitting tax relief to married couples .
He said: “All countries in Europe recognize marriage in their tax system. OECD figures show that the UK is far behind other developed countries in this regard… getting married and having children should not be considered a tax penalty in the UK.
“We can learn from other countries. The German system of income splitting between a married couple is particularly compelling.
“The public is crying out for a new direction on this program. Fortunately, the leadership race has opened up a welcome debate about what the Tories can do to strengthen our commitment to family life in Britain.
Former Chancellor Sajid Javid has insisted the British public is ‘demanding a new focus on the issue’ of taxation for married couples
“Fortunately, in Liz Truss, we have a leadership candidate who will put families first, as shown by her promise to increase the level of support for couples in the tax system.”
Ms Truss pledged to carry out an immediate review of family taxation if she becomes Prime Minister on September 5, saying: ‘Hard working families are the foundation of a stable society, and one of my top priorities as Prime Minister would ease the tax burden on families.
“They don’t just look after themselves, but also build communities, charities and even businesses.
“I want to make sure our tax system works for them. We will review the taxation of families to ensure that people are not penalized for taking time off to care for children or elderly parents.