Mr Cameron, who had already been fighting for enhanced tax transparency, is now claiming that he will clamp down on companies that enable tax evasion. He states that his government has already taken more action than any other to fight all forms of corruption, and is due to hold a summit in London next month to advance legislation surrounding tax evasion.
Following the Panama Papers drama and his own financial involvement in the fund Blairmore Holdings, David Cameron will attempt to rebuild the public’s trust and settle the continuing commotion surrounding the topic, via his approach to the Commons. He is to suggest a law enabling criminal penalties against establishments and the employees that promote or assist in tax evasion. Such plans were initially announced in February 2015 by the then-chief secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander. They have since been put out to consultation and David Cameron is expected to announce that they will be included in May’s Queen’s Speech resulting in the confirmation of the new law in the latter half of 2016. This proposed legislation is an extension of the Bribery Act and will lower the threshold of responsibility for companies whose employees may have advised clients to take actions which would evade paying tax. The legislation specifically targets evasion not avoidance. 2016 Tax Evasion Law
In his fight to reinstate the public’s trust in him, and in addition to passing the above law, The Prime Minister asserts that he will be more transparent than any previous Prime Minister regarding his finances, signifying this point by publishing his tax payments over the weekend.
The government has also announced it is to set up a new task force led by HM Revenue and Customs and the National Crime Agency. This group will examine accusations of tax-dodging and money laundering. Read more here.
Watch this space!