JOHN WHITING is to join HM Revenue & Customs as a non-executive director in April, stepping down from his role as tax policy director at the CIoT.
He will continue in his role as tax director at the Office of Tax Simplification and will remain involved with the CIoT.
Whiting – a former president of the institute – joined the CIoT in 2009 as tax policy director before assuming his role with the Office of Tax Simplification alongside his CIoT responsibilities in June 2010. Previously, he was a tax partner with PwC for 25 years. He was awarded an OBE in 2008 for his services to the tax profession.
Alongside Whiting, HMRC also appointed RWE Npower group chief executive Volker Beckers and former Wm Morrisons Supermarkets group HR and communications director Norman Pickavance as non-executive directors.
The three will take on the roles vacated by John Spence, who left last year, Phil Hodkinson, who will leave at the end of January, and Ian Barlow, who will become the lead non-executive director.
Exchequer secretary David Gauke said: "These appointments provide a rich mix of board-level experience. They have a lot to offer the HMRC board and will bring new and further capability and credible challenge to board discussions and to the new executive team."
As a CIOT member I am dissapointed that we have not been told of this appointement by the Institute. It would also have been courteous to have been informed of the precise terms of the 'continuing involvement' to which HMRC refers.
It also seems odd that about a year ago the then President was warning of the dangers of a cosy relationships. It seems that a year is a long time in the CIOT.
Posted by: Chicken Farmer, 17 Jan 2013 | 14:03
Has the leadership at CIOT gone completely mad and thought this through carefully? There are conflicts everywhere and perception is everything. Of course this looks like a "cosy relationship" and having two masters is a seriously bad judgment call. I wait to hear if there are consultancy arrangements in place too and would not be surprised given a continued involvement.
Posted by: gonzalo cluett, 17 Jan 2013 | 17:44
Hi Chicken Farmer. The CIOT has issued a statement welcoming the announcement which went up on the Institute’s website (see http://tinyurl.com/ao23bwy) shortly after you posted here.
CIOT External Relations Manager
Posted by: George Crozier, 17 Jan 2013 | 17:58
I like John Whiting a lot, he has done a great deal for the image of the tax profession.
If you want changes in the Government and HMRC though he's hardly your man.
I expect we'll see more and more of the same rather than the radical changes our tax system now desperately needs.
Posted by: Tax Break, 18 Jan 2013 | 10:00
I found the statement published by CIOT interesting as their president recognises the "perception" of conflicts. John Whiting is also heading the OTS and with a "continued involvement" with CIOT not being clearly defined by them will surely raise some important questions on conflicts. The points raised about "cosy relatinships" are also very valid and should be of major concern to the CIOT leadership and other involved with tax.
Posted by: Conflicted!!, 18 Jan 2013 | 10:14
John Whiting is clearly a talented man. He is well known in tax circles and has been a first class advocate of getting the tax system right. The HMRC appointment is a good one and should be welcomed as it clearly is by CIOT. It will only really work though if the conflicts are managed and clearly these will exist when sitting on both sides of the table no matter how good and honourable the intention. CIOT has done a good job in restoring a "healthy tension" and removing "cosy relationships" with HMRC in the last year so let's hope this appointment will not disappoint.
Posted by: Foreigner, 18 Jan 2013 | 11:41
It is excellent news that John Whiting is joining HMRC as a NED. I just do wonder though if he will be able to recognise the hat he will be wearing on any particular day. One minute at the OTS, the next at HMRC and then down the road to CIOT. This maybe good news for the tax profession generally but the issues raised about conflicts and cosy relationships do worry me. He may be good but he sure is not God!
Posted by: Luke, 18 Jan 2013 | 11:50
Your press release seems to have been an afterthought. It would have been better to have co-ordinated it with that of HMRC.
Your release does not however explain what form JW's continued involvement will take. I think the members have a right to know.
Posted by: Chicken Farmer, 18 Jan 2013 | 12:05
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