Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, has brought in the New Year by announcing that tackling tax avoidance by the wealthy and large businesses in Britain is at the forefront of the Lib Dem’s priorities for 2012.
In a video hosted on The Guardian’s website on 5 January 2012 with the article ‘Nick Clegg vows to tackle tax avoidance and excessive pay’, Nick Clegg says on the topic of tax avoidance by the wealthy and large businesses:
“There seems to be a wealthy elite of individuals or large companies who can pay a football team of accountants to play kind of clever tricks with the tax system so that they don’t pay their fair share. And that’s what needs to come to an end.”
In 2012 the Deputy Prime Minister aims to “make sure the tax system is simpler, more open and fairer so that everybody pays their fair share.”
In an interview with Radio 4’s Today programme Clegg said that he thought there are ‘millions’ of honest tax payers who are “quite rightly angered” by large businesses and the wealthy who “basically see paying tax as an optional extra” and “pick and choose the taxes” they pay.
Clegg is hoping to ensure everybody pays their ‘fair share’ of tax by introducing the UK’s first ‘general anti-avoidance rule’; “there should be a general rule that you can’t play the system, you can’t abuse the system”, he added.
Clegg finished the interview with Radio 4 by cementing his stance on Britain’s tax system:
“I will continue to advocate a system as a Liberal Democrat where you have a lower burden on work and enterprise and a higher burden of tax on wealth. I think we have a tax system that is unbalanced.”
Prime Minister, David Cameron, speaking on Thursday 5th January to a crowd of entrepreneurs and small businesses in Maidenhead, Berkshire, said that he thinks “a tougher approach” is needed on tax avoidance adopted by large companies using “fancy corporate lawyers” in order “to make sure they pay their fair share” of tax.
Cameron added that whilst the government is trying to reduce corporation tax that businesses in Britain “should pay that rate of tax rather than trying to avoid it”.
Kevin Kinsella Jnr, of KinsellaTax, said:
“Come on Dave and Nick, same old line has been going on since my dad, an old Irishman who worked for the LTE, left after working there for 40 years and got for his pension NOTHING, NOWT, SWEET FA.”
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