Teenagers and older pensioners have been promised more government spending to boost levels of education and provide some relief from rising council taxes.
Gordon Brown has promised every teenagers until the age of 18 will have a choice of education or training, while maintaining the government's target of a 50% participation rate in tertiary education.
Spending on education will rise from 4.7% of GDP in 1997 to 5.6 of GDP by 2007/8.
This equals an increase of £8.5bn between now and the end of the current spending review period.
Council tax receives a nod with the announcement that pensioners over age 70 will recieve an additional £100 per household on top of existing winter fuel allowances to deal with the cost of rising council taxes.
Additional tax increases include an extra 1p on a pint of beer and an extra 4p on a bottle of wine, while there is an extra 8p on a packet of cigarettes.IFAonline
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From 1 March