business and finance

Parties lock horns over how best to help the economy

The Green Party's satire on the four boy band of Tory, Labour, LibDem and UKIP leaders reached 1 million views on YouTube

The Green Party’s satire on the four boy band of Tory, Labour, LibDem and UKIP leaders reaches 1 million views on YouTube

  • Ed Balls has unveiled a new 10-point plan to bring in £7.5 billion a year to the Treasury in unpaid taxes.
  • David Cameron promises to end inheritance tax on properties worth up to £1 million.
  • Lib Dems outline how they will balance the budget with a heart.
  • The Greens have pledged to raise the top rate of tax to 60p in the pound.
  • UKIP claims Tories are ‘dead from Birmingham upwards.’

Labour pledges huge fines for tax avoiders 

Labour Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls today announced plans to wage all-out war on tax dodgers if they win the May 7 election.

The 10- point plan will form a central part of Labour’s manifesto which is to be unveiled in Manchester on Monday.

By closing loopholes and increasing fines, Labour hopes to claw back more than £7.5bn a year to funnel back into the economy.

In a statement, Ed Balls said:

We will close the loopholes the Tories won’t act on, increase transparency, toughen up penalties and abolish the non-dom rules. And our first Budget will make sure that, following an immediate review of HMRC, it has all the powers and resources it needs to come down hard on tax avoidance and evasion.

Working people who are paying more in tax want everyone to pay their fair share. And there shouldn’t be one rule for a few and another rule for everybody else. The Tories should back Labour’s plan and stop defending the indefensible.

Labour hope the crackdown on tax avoiders will bolster the parties damaged economic credibility.

The 10-point plan is as follows:

  • Abolish the non-dom rules so that wealthy people are not able to use loopholes to avoid paying tax like the rest of us, while introducing a temporary residence rule for those genuinely in the UK for a short period of time, such as university students.
  • Re-write the rules which allow private equity managers to get away with paying less tax than ordinary working people even when they have not been investing their own money.
  • Close loopholes used by hedge funds to avoid stamp duty.
  • Force the UK’s Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies to produce publicly available registries of beneficial ownership.
  • Increase penalties for tax avoidance including new penalties for those who are caught by the General Anti-Abuse Rule.
  • Close loopholes like the Eurobonds loophole which allow some large companies to move profits out of the UK and avoid Corporation Tax.
  • Scrap the “Shares for Rights” scheme, which the OBR has warned could enable avoidance and cost £1bn.
  • Tackle disguised self-employment by introducing strict deeming criteria.
  • Tackle the use of dormant companies to avoid tax by requiring them to report more frequently.
  • Make country-by-country reporting information publicly available.

David Cameron promises to end inheritance tax 

David Cameron has announced plans to end inheritance tax on properties from April 2017.

The plan was proposed in the 2010 General Election, but halted under the coalition with the Liberal Democrats.

However, the ‘family home allowance’ will not apply for properties over £1 million.

The Tory Chancellor George Osborne told the BBC Andrew Marr programme: ‘We believe that your home… should belong to you and your family, not the taxman.’

George Osborne on the Andrew Marr Show backing the Tory line ' It's natural to want to pass the home you worked so hard for onto your children.'

George Osborne on the Andrew Marr Show backing the Tory line ‘It’s natural to want to pass the home you worked so hard for onto your children.’ Image: BBC TV

Labour have called the pledge a ‘panic move’ and one which would bring a tax cut of £140,000 to people owning £2 million homes.

LibDems talk about how they’ll reduce National Debt

The Liberal Democrats say they plan to balance the books with a ‘heart as well as a brain.’

Nick Clegg trying his hand at bowling in Colchester. Image: @Nick_Clegg

Nick Clegg trying his hand at bowling in Colchester. Image: @Nick_Clegg

Leader Nick Clegg was bowling for victory in Colchester, Essex in support of their longstanding MP there.

The LibDems argue they have a disciplined approach to deficit control that is not ‘slash and burn.’

Borrow less and cut less. LibDem fiscal policy. Image: Liberal Democrats

Borrow less and cut less. LibDem fiscal policy. Image: Liberal Democrats

 

Greens pledge to raise the top rate of tax to 60p in the pound

Green Party Leader Natalie Bennett revealed today that ‘We’re rebalancing our society. We’re calling for a 10:1 ratio for the top paid and lowest paid in an organisation.’

Natalie Bennett and the Green advocating a wealth distribution tax policy. Image: @TheGreenParty

Natalie Bennett and the Green advocating a wealth redistribution tax policy. Image: @TheGreenParty

The party also claims to have made the wittiest party political broadcast.

Their rendering of Natalie’s four rival male leaders as a boys’ band has attracted one million views on YouTube.

No hope for Tory win in the North, according to UKIP

UKIP leader Nigel Farage has been concentrating on campaigning in his South Thanet constituency today.

Nigel Farage doorstepping in South Thanet in Kent. Image@UKIP

Nigel Farage doorstepping in South Thanet in Kent. Image@UKIP

When it comes to inheritance he said as a matter of principle UKIP believes assets purchased out of taxed income should not be taxed again in death.

Meanwhile, Ukip’s deputy leader, Paul Nuttall, told Sky News’ Dermot Murnaghan programme that the Conservatives are ‘pretty much dead from Birmingham upwards.’

He said Ukip has the Labour Party ‘on the run’ in the north of England.

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