Office of Tax Simplification’s initial findings due this autumn

Chancellor George Osborne could announce radical tax reforms as early as next
year’s Budget based on recommendations from the newly formed Office of Tax

Osborne and Exchequer Secretary David Gauke today appointed an interim board
of tax experts to review the British tax system with the aim of simplifying it
so that ‘the spaghetti bowl of reliefs and allowances’ are easier to understand
for all taxpayers.

Osborne said : ‘We have one of the most comprehensive and opaque systems in
the tax world. I want to create a simpler tax code that says to the world that
we are open for business.’

Michael Jack, former financial secretary to the Treasury, will chair the OTS
with John Whiting, tax policy director of the Chartered Institute of Taxation,
acting as tax director. Both are appointed on an interim basis to establish the
OTS for one year. Permanent appointments will be made next year, however both
men today said they would like to be considered for the permanent positions.

‘It’s a very good feeling that something I have been working on for years
comes to fruition,’ said Osborne.

The chancellor has asked Jack and Whiting to produce two reports – the first
a review of all reliefs in the tax system, totalling more than 400, identifying
those that should be repealed. The second report will look at reducing
complexity for smaller businesses and finding an alternative to the
controversial IR35 rule.

Further reading:

Treasury calls in John Whiting to simplify tax

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