The Treasury has admitted the costing it did on Tory plans to charge a
£25,000 levy on all non-doms was based on assumptions, as hard numbers are
notoriously difficult to compile.
In a letter to Tory shadow chancellor George Osborne, permanent secretary
Nicholas Macpherson said that the Treasury costing of a non-dom levy was based
on the best estimates ‘in an area where data from both self-assessment tax
returns and the Office of National Statistics are incomplete’.
In the letter Macpherson said: ‘…such estimates are not routinely made as the
information required is not collected… there is no complete data set for the
unremitted foreign income of non-domiciles, and the costing does not contain
such an estimate.’
The Tories had based their levy on the fact that there should be at least
150,000 non-doms in the UK who will have to pay the £25,000.
The government quickly rubbished the policy saying that there would only be a
mere 15,000 non-doms who would actually have enough foreign income to justify
claiming non-dom status and tax breaks of foreign income it offers.
The government said this was based on Treasury figures, which were
immediately questioned by the Conservatives, who wrote to Macpherson requesting
the costing made by the department.
Current figures show that in 2005/2006 114,000 people filed tax returns
claiming non-dom status. This figure is expected increase, however, with some
estimates indicating that there will be 200,000 non-doms in the UK within the
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