A TEN per cent rise in the National Insurance rate comes into effect on Wednesday, creating yet another burden on the already strained wallets of people living under Boris Johnson’s administration.

While mitigation measures will come in from July, raising the minimum threshold to begin payments from £9880 to £12,570 per year, the significant increase will not be welcomed at a time when the cost-of-living crisis looks to be spiralling out of control.

Analysis by the Office for Budget Responsibility, released after the recent Spring Statement, shows people face the highest tax burden in 70 years, and the biggest drop in living standards since records began.

READ MORE: Chancellor has failed to tackle 'worst drop in living standards since 1950s'

Labour said that the UK is the only major economy raising taxes on working people in the middle of a cost-of-living crisis.

The party marked the national insurance rise by sending 15 activists to the Treasury. Dressed as Chancellor Rishi Sunak, each activist held a bill representing one of the tax hikes Sunak has presided over in the past two years.

Campaigners dressed as Rishi Sunak protest outside the Treasury office, London, to coincide with the increase in National Insurance Contributions. Photo: PA

These are:

  • 1 - Corporation tax increase, announced budget 2020
  • 2 - Council tax measures, announced spending round 2020
  • 3 - Reduction in entrepreneurs’ relief for capital gains tax, announced at budget 2020
  • 4 - Corporation tax increase, budget 2021
  • 5 - Income tax personal allowance freeze, budget 2021
  • 6 - Inheritance tax threshold freeze, budget 2021
  • 7 - Capital gains tax annual exempt allowance freeze, budget 2021
  • 8 - VAT registration threshold for business freeze, budget 2021
  • 9 - Health and social care levy (the National Insurance hike), autumn budget 2021
  • 10 - Dividend tax, autumn budget 2021
  • 11 - Freeze in starting rate band for savings tax, autumn budget 2021
  • 12 - Freeze in adult ISA subscription limit, autumn budget 2021
  • 13 - Income tax basis period reform, autumn budget 2021
  • 14 - Council tax measures, autumn budget 2021
  • 15 - Freeze in student loan repayment threshold, announced January 2022

Pat McFadden, Labour’s shadow chief secretary to the Treasury, said: “Today [Wednesday], our high tax, low growth Chancellor Rishi Sunak will hit households with a tax hike that will reduce living standards and harm our economy. Working families feel more insecure than ever.”

A Treasury spokesperson said: “Exceptional levels of borrowing not seen since the Second World War to support jobs and livelihoods through the pandemic meant we had to make tough decisions to repair the public finances – as well as investing billions in tackling the NHS backlog, reforming social care, and continuing the fight against Covid.

“Despite this, the Tax Plan announced at Spring Statement delivers the biggest cut to personal taxes in over a quarter of a century, reducing the tax burden on working families, driving growth through cutting business taxes, and sharing the proceeds of growth.”