Hague reiterates IR35 repeal pledge

Speaking to the Centre for Policy Studies at the Institute of Directors in London yesterday, Hague said the Tories would abolish IR35 and the Climate Change Levy in an effort to ‘restore the competitiveness of the British economy’.

In February, David Heathcoat-Amory, shadow secretary of state for trade and industry, revealed that the Tories would repeal the legislation which has become the focus of concerted campaigning by contractors who feel unfairly targeted by the rules. IR35 was introduced by the government as a measure to force contractors, working through service companies, to pay what it described as a ‘fair’ rate of tax.

But Hague said yesterday: ‘We will also take urgent steps to scrap burdens on business and restore flexibility to the economy.

‘We will set regulatory budgets which limit the burden of red tape that each government department can impose on business, and make sure they come down year after year.’

The Conservative leader today, however, found his audience to be a good deal less polite. Hague took to the road to spread the message of his party’s ‘Keep the Pound’ campaign. During his visit to Pudsey near Leeds protestors dressed in William Hague masks barracked at the opposition leader.

Several protestors shouted ‘keep the groat’ at Hague, PA reported, in reference to his campaign.

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