Business believes UK tax system is 'fundamentally unfair', research suggests

23 Apr 2019

According to research published by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), businesses believe that the UK tax system is 'fundamentally unfair'.

The BCC polled more than 1,000 businesses, and found that 58% of firms believe that the tax system is 'unfair to businesses like theirs'.

67% of firms 'don't believe HMRC applies tax rules fairly across all sizes of business', the research revealed. Additionally, 64% of respondents stated that they disagree that HMRC applies tax rules fairly, regardless of where the business is domiciled.

The BCC has urged the government to 'improve HMRC's service to business'.

'These results reflect a strong impression among businesses that the current UK tax regime isn't a level playing field,' said Suren Thiru, Head of Economics at the BCC.

'HMRC must step up efforts to provide better support to smaller businesses to get their tax right, rather than simply pursuing and enforcing penalties. This should include matching investment in frontline HMRC help towards small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with their work on non-compliance and tax evasion.

'More also needs to be done to address the escalating burden of upfront costs and taxes to provide firms with much-needed headroom to get on and invest, train their staff, and compete on the global stage.'

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