Jessica Morden

Labour MP for Newport East

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Tax Havens pledge and tackling tax avoidance

taxdodgers.jpgMany constituents have contacted me over the last week about their concerns about tax avoidance and the lack of action by the Tory/Lib Dem Coalition Government to stop this.

Labour has this week set out the measures it will take to tackle tax avoidance in the first months of a Labour Government. David Cameron and George Osborne have failed to deliver on tackling tax avoidance in the last five years and failed to close the loopholes Labour has highlighted.  As a result, the amount of uncollected tax has risen under this Government.

And this week in Parliament, Tory MPs voted against Labour’s plans to crack down harder on tax avoidance.

Hard working families have had enough of David Cameron’s failing economy, and his economic plan which doesn't work for them because it always prioritises helping a few at the top.

Ed Miliband has said that he will put UK tax havens on an international blacklist within six months of a Labour government taking office unless they end their system of secrecy and produce a public register of offshore company owners.

Ed Miliband has also pledged that Labour will act in our first Finance Bill to:

  • Introduce penalties for those who are caught by the General Anti-Abuse Rule
  • Close loopholes used by hedge funds to avoid stamp duty
  • Close loopholes like the Eurobonds loophole which allow some large companies to move profits out of the UK and avoid Corporation Tax
  • Stop umbrella companies exploiting tax reliefs
  • Scrap the “Shares for Rights” scheme, which the OBR has warned could enable avoidance and cost £1bn and is administered by HMRC, and so ensure HMRC can better focus on tackling tax avoidance
  • 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

Labour’s measures to tackle tax avoidance will also include:

  • Ensuring stronger independent scrutiny of the tax system, including reliefs, and the government’s efforts to tackle tax avoidance
  • Forcing the UK’s Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies to produce publicly available registries of beneficial ownership
  • Making country-by-country reporting information publicly available
  • Ensuring developing countries are properly engaged in the drawing up of global tax rules

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