Newcastle-Central Labour MP Jim Cousins called on chief treasury secretary Paul Boateng ‘to mount a robust defence of Britain’s corporation tax revenues’.
Cousins, a senior member of the treasury committee, urged cooperation with ‘tax authorities in Germany and the United States that seem to be engaged in a similar battle’.
The MP earlier warned of the danger that the drive against tax avoidance might falter if chancellor Gordon Brown is moved – as pundits predict – to the post of foreign secretary after the general election expected in May.
Cousins’ attack was mounted on the largest accountancy firms during Treasury Questions after former Tory shadow chief secretary David Heathcoat-Amory accused the Treasury of over estimating receipts from corporation tax for the fourth year in a row.
He said: ‘The loss of revenue is now £37.7 billion in total for those four years. What tax increases are the government planning to make up the tax gap?’
Boateng said corporation tax growth was only one element of receipts forecasts. The three largest taxes – income tax, national insurance and VAT – were broadly as expected and corporation tax forecasts were on track to be realised.
He told Cousins that the UK is working closely with the countries he mentioned and paymaster general Dawn Primarolo was pursuing ‘her agenda of ensuring that we bear down heavily on tax avoidance.’
Changes to the tax system is urged to support the growth of entrepreneurs, found a report from the Grant Thornton UK, the Institute of Directors, and the Prelude Group
The EC has been instructed to draft a European Union (EU) directive authorising an EU financial transaction tax, which would apply to ten of the EU’s 28 member states
Government's estimate of a £400m admin saving from Making Tax Digital is way off - and is instead a huge cost burden, warns Lamont Pridmore chief executive Graham Lamont
HMRC is continuing to ramp up the number of raids on premises it carries out as part of criminal investigations, searching 761 properties in the last year