• Business
    The Telegraph

    Rishi Sunak plots tax raid on parcels and freelance workers

    Rishi Sunak is plotting a new tax on online deliveries next month and a raid on the self-employed later this year, The Telegraph can reveal. The Chancellor will use Wednesday's Budget to announce a £5 billion fund to help high street pubs, restaurants and non-essential shops that have remained closed as a result of the Covid lockdown. On March 23 – dubbed "tax day" in Whitehall – he will then unveil a series of consultations on further tax increases to start paying for the £300 billion cost of dealing with the virus crisis. The Telegraph has learnt that this will include options to tax online retail more heavily, including the possibility of a new green tax on every internet delivery, alongside other online tax ideas. However, it is understood that he has turned his back on a mooted windfall tax on the "excess profits" of internet companies. Mr Sunak is also planning to use a Budget in the autumn to increase National Insurance Contributions paid by Britain's 4.5 million self-employed, arguing that they too benefited from state support in the pandemic. A Treasury source said: "The idea of an online sales tax is being looked at as part of the business rates review. "Responses to the consultation are being considered in the round, but the Chancellor is cognisant of the need to level up the playing field between the high street and online taxation."

  • News
    The Telegraph

    Nicola Sturgeon faces triple threat as MSPs demand evidence to corroborate Alex Salmond allegations

    Nicola Sturgeon is facing a triple threat to her political career as a Holyrood inquiry and opposition MSPs demanded the evidence that would corroborate Alex Salmond's claim she had repeatedly breached the ministerial code. Ahead of the First Minister's appearance on Wednesday, the committee conducting the inquiry is on Monday expected to formally request a cache of documents from Mr Salmond's solicitors that he claimed proved there was a "malicious" plot against him. It is understood a majority of the committee supports the move, which was suggested by Mr Salmond in his closing remarks of his six-hour evidence session on Friday as a means of circumventing the Scottish Government and Crown Office. MSPs hope to have the evidence cleared by the committee's legal advisors in time for Lord Advocate James Wolffe and Crown agent David Harvie giving evidence on Tuesday and Ms Sturgeon on Wednesday. The First Minister is believed to have set aside five hours in her diary. The Scottish Tories also lodged a motion of no confidence in John Swinney, the Deputy First Minister, over his refusal to hand over the SNP government's legal advice during Mr Salmond's successful judicial review. Douglas Ross, their leader, gave Mr Swinney 24 hours to release the advice or face a vote to remove him after the SNP government ignored two Holyrood demands for it to be provided. The Liberal Democrats said they would back the Tory motion and it will be considered today by Anas Sarwar, the new Scottish Labour leader. It is understood that the Greens will wait to see what is said in the motion before making a decision. Mr Salmond told the inquiry that the external counsel appointed by Ms Sturgeon's government advised that it would probably lose the case and later threatened to resign unless it was conceded. The Scottish Government has been accused of wasting £600,000 of public money by only collapsing the judicial review case at the eleventh hour, a potential breach of the ministerial code.

  • News
    The Telegraph

    Nearly a quarter of NHS staff in London are refusing Covid vaccines

    Almost a quarter of NHS staff in some parts of the country are refusing Covid jabs, with official statistics showing more than 200,000 health and care workers putting patients at risk. NHS figures show that 91 percent of front line healthcare staff across the country have taken up the offer of a vaccine, but that dips to 76 per cent in London – the worst refusal rate. In total, more than 41,000 front line healthcare workers in the capital, including medics, hospital porters, cleaners and laboratory staff, have not had the jab. The national picture among care home staff is even worse, with uptake of less than 73 percent. The statistics show that around 106,000 front line healthcare staff and more than 121,000 care workers have yet to take up the vaccine. Last week, Prof Chris Whitty, the chief medical officer, said NHS and care home staff had a "professional responsibility" to get vaccinated, while the Queen said those who refuse the vaccine "ought to think about other people rather than themselves".

  • Politics
    Reuters

    Trump repeats election lie, declares himself future of the Republican Party

    Former President Donald Trump on Sunday hinted at a possible run for president again in 2024, attacked President Joe Biden, and repeated his fraudulent claims that he won the 2020 election in his first major appearance since leaving the White House nearly six weeks ago. Refusing to admit he lost the Nov. 3 presidential election to Joe Biden, Trump offered a withering critique of his Democratic successor's first weeks in office and suggested he might run again. "They just lost the White House," the Republican former president said after criticizing Biden's handling of border security.

  • Entertainment
    PA Media: Entertainment

    Dancing On Ice couple get the boot

    The show returned to TV screens after a week-long break.

  • Celebrity
    Yahoo Style UK

    The Duchess of Cambridge rewears versatile white deep v-neck bodysuit for Zoom call

    She joined Prince William to discuss the positive impact of Covid-19 vaccines.