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Hodge calls for evidence as new tax committee prepares for first hearing

LABOUR MP MARGARET HODGE has issued a call for evidence as her newly-formed all-party tax responsibility committee prepares for its first hearing.

The group has pledged to explore the ways in which parliament can help to build and maintain the fair, sustainable and transparent tax system that is needed if individuals, businesses and markets are to create growth and prosperity both in the UK and internationally.

The group’s website – which goes live today at www.appgresponsibletax.org.uk – allows people to contribute to its research and reports.

This is the first time that an all-party parliamentary group has enabled the public to add their views in an online platform. The group aims to be “as clear and transparent as possible” and to encourage “open and ongoing” dialogue between stakeholders who want to work towards a “shared understanding of what responsible tax behaviour looks like”.

The group’s consultation papers and publications will directly attribute contributors’ ideas and evidence throughout the process.

The committee is asking for members of the public to comment on the terms of reference for the OECD’s Base Erosion and Profit-Shifting project, which will be followed by a call for evidence next week.

The committee, which is chaired by Hodge, will focus on three areas in the coming year, beginning with a consultation on the OECD’s Base Erosion and Profit Shifting recommendations to the G20. Later work in 2016 will include an enquiry into HMRC’s capacity to deliver fair tax and the examination of tax reliefs and simplification of the tax system.

She said: “I am excited about the launch of our new website. During my time as chair of Public Accounts Committee it was clear that openness and transparency lies at the heart of any successful project. I hope that we set a new standard for transparency for APPG’s and groups of this kind.”

“We want to start an open discussion around the responsible tax agenda with as many people with a broad range of views. By enabling the public to contribute their views directly on to the site, interested parties can observe the development of our work in real time and look at contributions from others.”

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