Simplification at last

April 1, 2018

Well there we have it. The actual rate will be confirmed in the Budget this autumn, but I am proud to announce that the government have accepted my suggestion for the most radical simplification of the tax system in forty years: the Single Tax Rate is go!

The Single Tax Rate works like this: everything gets taxed at the same rate.

That’s it.

I mean, why should individuals be taxed at 20, 40 and 45 per cent, corporations at 19 and  trusts at wacky rates of 7.5, 20, 38.1 and 45 per cent? Why is VAT 20%, the sugar tax 18 or 24p per litre and the plastic bag tax 5p? Landfill tax is £86.10 or £2.70 a tonne but Petroleum Revenue Tax is zero – but it’s not abolished in case anyone fancies claiming back losses… Make it simple, stupid!

From now on, everything gets taxed at one rate. Income tax and corporation tax? Same. No advantage or disadvantage to carrying on your business in one way or another. VAT? Same rate. Environmental and behavioural taxes? Same rate. Imagine the Budgets of the future! The Chancellor will be able to stand up and say “from next April, the tax rate will be 20%” and everyone will know where they stand, how much they have to pay, and how to calculate it.

I mean, I admit, when I suggested the idea, I had expected the Chancellor would stick with 20% as a nice, easy, round number that everyone can calculate on their fingers. But, hey, it’s a start. I’m sure we’ll all get used to calculating 42.1984% of things in no time.

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