What time is Budget 2021 today? When Rishi Sunak’s announcement starts and how to watch the speech live

IN A 'Budget first' Rishi Sunak will be taking questions from the public and the press straight after his Commons statement.

Shops, bars, clubs, hotels, restaurants, gyms and hair salons will be offered £5billion of additional grants, the government has already vowed.

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What time is Rishi Sunak announcing the Budget?

The Budget will be held TODAY on Wednesday afternoon, March 3, 2021.

It is scheduled on the parliament website to take place after the Prime Minister's Questions.

PMQs usually lasts around half an hour so the Budget is expected to start just after 12.30pm.

But, it may be later if PMQs overruns and time is often given to allow MPs to enter the House of Commons chambers.

Mr Sunak tweeted: "This Wednesday, in a Budget first, I will be taking questions from the public and the press straight after my statement. Live from 5pm."

Each year the Chancellor of the Exchequer makes the Budget – or financial – statement to the House of Commons, outlining the state of the economy and the Government's proposals for changes to taxation.

The House of Commons debates the Budget and scrutinises the subsequent Finance Bill, which enacts the Chancellor's proposals.

What is Rishi Sunak expected to announce?

There are plenty of reports – and rumours – predicting Mr Sunak's Budget announcement.

They include:

  • Beer duty is expected to be frozen to give pubs a flying start when lockdown is lifted
  • First-time buyers and current homeowners will be able to get mortgages on properties up to £600,000 with five per cent deposits
  • Nearly £410million will support the badly-hit culture sector
  • A £300million summer sports recovery package will help cricket, tennis and horse racing
  • The fuel duty freeze is set to continue
  • Furlough has been pipped for extension to "unleash growth"
  • A £520million 'shot in the arm' is expected for small businesses
  • Announcement of the creation of 250,000 green apprenticeships
  • Ruling out new green levies like the dreaded meat tax

But, William Hague, who is a close ally of the chancellor, warned that levies on businesses and individuals "have to go up" to pay off the pandemic debt pile.

And, the cost of ordering goods online could rise, according to rumours in The Telegraph, as the Chancellor is reportedly considering introducing a new ‘green tax’ on every internet delivery.

There is also talk that some form of 2020's Eat Out To Help Out scheme might be announced to boost the hospitality sector, writes the Daily Mail.

The furlough scheme is expected to be extended until the end of September.

Mr Sunak is also set to reveal extra help for 600,000 self-employed Brits that have not received support from the Government.

A £20-per-week Universal Credit uplift in payments is likely to be extended for another six months.

And contactless payment limit is set to rise from £45 to £100 in today's Budget.

How can I watch Rishi Sunak announce the Budget?

The Chancellor's Budget can be followed via The Sun Online's dedicated liveblog.

Or, watch our YouTube channel to see Mr Sunak deliver his public economic proposals.

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