We are currently trialling our new-look independent.co.uk website - please send any feedback to beta@independent.co.uk

UK Politics

Did Osborne tip off GlaxoSmithKline about his plans?


Less than 24 hours after George Osborne confirmed in the Budget that the Government would bring in new tax measures to encourage investment in research and development in the UK, the pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline announced it would be building its first new manufacturing facility in the UK for almost 40 years and investing £500m to create 1,000 UK jobs.

Yesterday, Glaxo said its plans had been in the pipeline for some time and pointed out the tax changes had first been mooted back in 2009.

But others pointed out that Glaxo's CEO, Sir Andrew Witty, is in David Cameron's Business Advisory Group – and has regular meetings with the Government. The move, they suggested, was very well choreographed with comments from Sir Andrew, Mr Cameron and Scottish Secretary Michael Moore all approved to go on Glaxo's press release yesterday morning.