CLAIMS for UK Patent Box tax reliefs reached £342.9m in the first year of its existence, official statistics show.
During the first year of the Patent Box tax relief, which enables companies to apply a lower rate of corporation tax to profits from their intellectual property, most of the relief was claimed by large and medium sized companies.
HMRC said that of the 700 companies that claimed for tax relief, 225 companies large businesses claimed £327.2m, or 95.4% of the total tax relief.
The remaining £16m was shared between 475 companies, 290 of them SMEs or micros.
Around two thirds of companies were in manufacturing and claimed the highest value of relief at £216.9m (63.3%). The second highest amount of tax relief claimed was in IT, financial services and real estate (£58.5m).
The government announced the relief in 2010 in an attempt to improve the UK’s competitiveness in the high tech field and persuade high tech companies not to move overseas, and even to convince them to return. Companies were able to sign up in April 2013, however, they will only gain the full benefit in April 2017 as it is being phased for a five-year period. HMRC plans to publish the statistics annually.
Introduced in 2013 to encourage R&D investment, the scheme allows UK businesses to pay only 10% corporation tax on profits derived from any UK or certain EU patents
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