General election 2017: Business manifesto pledges at a glance
With a week to go until the General Election everything is up for grabs, as the latest election poll predicts a hung Parliament.
With the political parties’ plans for the economy sure to take centre stage in the countdown to 8 June, here is a summary of the tax and corporate proposals which will impact business.
The Conservative manifesto, Forward Together, Our Plan for a Stronger Britain and a Prosperous Future promises to reduce taxes on business.
Here’s how this plays out:
- Keep the commitment to reduce corporate tax to 17% by 2020
- Legislate for tougher regulation of tax advisory firms in relation to tax avoidance and evasion
- Take a more proactive approach to transparency and misuse of trusts
- Improve HMRC’s capabilities to stamp down on smuggling
- Take further measures to reduce online VAT fraud
- Consult on how to extend the safeguard tariff cap to micro-businesses in the business energy market
- Make executive pay packages subject to approval by shareholders
- Continue to support small businesses through business rate relief and low taxation.
For the Many Not the Few is Labour’s campaign promise.
A fair taxation system is part of that pledge:
- Increase corporation tax to 26% in 2020 but reintroduce lower small profits rate for small business
- Exclude small businesses from plans to introduce quarterly reporting and take action on late payments
- Tackle tax avoidance and close loopholes
- Introduce an excessive pay levy on companies with staff on very high pay
- Extend stamp duty reserve tax to cover a wider range of assets
- Introduce a package of reforms to business rates – including switching from RPI to CPI indexation.
The Liberal Democrats are proposing to Change Britain’s Future.
This is how they intend to do it:
- Reform capital gains tax and dividend tax relief and entrepreneurs’ relief
- Reverse a number of Conservative tax cuts, including corporation tax from 20% to 17%, capital gains cuts, capital gains extended relief
- Introduce a General Anti-Avoidance Rule
- Consider the implementation of land value taxation
- Create a new ‘start-up allowance’
- Review business rates to reduce burdens on small firms
- Establish a coherent tax and regulatory framework for landfill, incineration and waste collection
- Lead international action to ensure global companies pay fair taxes in the developing countries in which they operate.
The SNP’s manifesto, Stronger for Scotland, advocates:
- Not supporting further reductions to corporation tax
- Backing improvements to tax collection and tougher action on tax avoidance
- Supporting the reversal of reductions to the bank levy and introduction of a tax on bankers’ bonuses
- Supporting calls for the extension of the annual investment allowance, from £200,000 per year to £1 million per year
- Continuing to lift premises out of business rates although most of the taxes and regulations that impact small businesses are the responsibility of Westminster
- Pressing the UK government to phase the introduction of the Quarterly Digital Tax Reporting over a five-year transition period, and consider exemptions for those who are not incorporated or VAT-registered.