04/06/2004

Businesses welcome R&D Tax Credit guideline clarification

Business has welcomed clarified guidelines on research and development (R&D) tax credits, but there is still room for improvement if confidence in the process is to remain, says PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

According to a PwC poll conducted at a recent R&D event for representatives of UK public and private business, 95% of respondents agreed that the definition of R&D in the 5 March 2004 DTI guidelines is clearer than the 2000 guidelines.

Diarmuid MacDougall, tax director, PricewaterhouseCoopers said: “Business is benefiting from greater clarity around R&D tax credits and it is promising that many feel they will be able to implement a claim process largely performed in-house.

“The Government needs to ensure the continual training of its inspectors in relevant tax credit rules is a priority to maintain confidence in the process.”

Business respondents also commented in the following areas:
  • 82% agreed that the level of UK R&D tax credit is competitive with other territories
  • 73% of those who have approached the Inland Revenue in advance of their R&D credit claim believe that it has facilitated the process
  • 83% of those who have experienced the process believe that they will be able to implement a R&D claim process which can be largely performed in-house
However, only 56% of those who had submitted an R&D claim thought that the inspector handling it was familiar with the relevant tax credit rules.

(SP)

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