George Osborne has name-checked Barnstaple in his Budget, currently being delivered to the House of Commons. The Chancellor said that a typical corner shop in Barnstaple will pay no business rates, during his announcement about raising the threshold for small business rate relief. Mr Osborne said the threshold for small businesses would permanently raise from £6,000 to a maximum of £15,000, and for the higher rate from £18,000 to £51,000. He said this would mean that, from April next year, 600,000 small businesses will pay no business rates at all, at an annual saving for them of up to nearly £6,000. A further quarter of a million businesses will see their rates cut. North Devon MP Peter Heaton-Jones said the specific mention for Barnstaple showed were succeeding in getting North Devon on the Governments radar like never before. He added: We also feature in the Budgets background papers, which confirm the launch of the Local Majors Fund the pot from which Local councils can bid for funds for road improvements. Again the North Devon Link Road was specifically mentioned, and I will keep working with Devon County Council to ensure we put together a strong bid for this money. Mr Osborne has also taken a number of steps to help small businesses in the new world of online shopping and what he termed the great unfairness they face when they compete with global giants like Amazon and eBay. New actions will tackle overseas retailers that store goods in Britain and sell them online without paying VAT. And UK micro-entrepreneurs who sell services online or rent out their homes through the internet will benefit from two new tax-free allowances each worth £1,000 a year. Mr Osbornes eight Budget will offer a grim warning about the global economy and promise action to ensure that the country does not pay later. The Chancellor is expected to say that, although the UKs economy is strong, the storm clouds are gathering again. Concerns about economic uncertainty will cast their shadow over the Budget, with the Chancellor planning to impose a further £4 billion of spending cuts to allow him to meet his fiscal target of getting the nations finances into surplus by the next election.