Why is it the right time for a business tax roadmap?
With a General Election on the horizon, we believe that now is the time for the CBI to secure political consensus for a UK business tax roadmap that gives firms and investors confidence.
A business tax roadmap is not a new idea – governments have published them before; in 2010 and in 2016. These roadmaps gave businesses confidence and certainty about the future, enabling them to invest while allowing taxpayers and government to sufficiently prepare for change. But, over the last few years, short-term shocks – including the COVID pandemic and energy crisis – contributed to a short-term approach to tax policy. That is why the CBI has repeatedly called for a new tax roadmap – and, for the first time, has published what our members think that roadmap should look like.
What is the roadmap’s purpose?
The roadmap not only looks at areas where the business tax system could benefit from a comprehensive plan; like net zero, local government funding and labour force taxation. It also looks at how tax policy is designed and how tax is administered. It calls for simplification and smart digitalisation to be at the core of policy design, and for a recommitment to consult appropriately with taxpayers on all new measures.
We recognise businesses pay two costs in relation to tax: the tax itself and the costs of compliance; including business time, system creation and maintenance, and specialist advice. That is why, for the first time, the CBI are calling for proportionality to be a core principle of tax design. This will ensure that the costs of compliance are proportionate to the revenue raised.
How have we involved members in the process?
The CBI’s Tax Committee was involved at every stage of the roadmap’s design, from discussion of the principles on which it should be based, to reviewing the final report and recommendations. Members of our specialist working groups were also contacted where areas affected their interest – for example, on Green Taxes and Business Rates.
If you are interested in finding out more about the CBI’s Tax Committee, or any of our tax working groups, please contact Alice Jeffries (email@example.com). Working group membership is open to all members who are interested.