Tories plan SME tax cuts

The Conservative Party is considering tax cuts for small businesses to
attract Indian businessmen to inbound investment.

The party’s Economic Competitive Policy Group has encouraged members to
review a 19% tax rate, imposed by Labour on small business dividends in 2004.

The group, led by John Redwood, said the tax needed ‘simplification or
flattening’ to attract more investment in SMEs.

While a party spokesman added that the idea would be considered but was not
party policy, shadow chancellor George Osborne indicated his intention to
decrease the taxation burden when he proposed plans to scrap stamp duty on
shares last week.

The tax cut suggestions are one of a series of proposals made by Redwood’s
group, aimed at encouraging trade and investment links between India and the UK.

The report also encouraged British universities to offer more bursaries and
scholarships to Indian students, which have been comparatively slower than US
institutions such as the Harvard Business School, in attracting academic talent.

The Tories also suggested a review of the department of Trade and Industry’s
?100,000 spend on the Indo-British Partnership Network, dwarfed by the ?4m
budget for the China-Britian Business Council.

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