Dismay at axing of Home Computing Initiative

The axing of HCI could have a severe impact on many small IT businesses

Jo Swinson MP has expressed her dismay at Chancellor Gordon Brown’s decision to abolish the Government’s Home Computing Initiative (HCI).

The HCI gives companies tax breaks on computers bought for home use by employees. It was set up in 1999 and has led to the establishment of many small businesses supplying IT equipment.

Commenting on the Chancellor’s decision, Jo said:

“The axing of the Home Computing Initiative, which provides valuable incentives for employers who make provision for home computing among staff, is a kneejerk decision by the Chancellor. It has been taken without consultation with the industry, seemingly in a last minute attempt to increase revenue.

“Without warning, the future of small businesses across the country, which were set up to take advantage of HCI, have been put in jeopardy. I have asked the Department for Trade and Industry and the Treasury for details over the number of businesses that will be affected by this decision, as well as the short timeframe in which the decision appears to have been taken.

“At a time when the Government should be actively tackling the digital divide, the Chancellor is doing the exact opposite.”

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