Government Publishes Draft Legislation For Tax Changes

The Government has today published draft clauses for the Finance Bill 2011.

This is the first time the Government has published the majority of draft clauses for consultation and marks the first step towards the Government's commitment to improving tax policy making.

The Government is also publishing a response to the consultation Tax policy making: a new approach, setting out changes to the way in which tax policy will be developed and communicated. As part of this, the Government has announced that Finance Bill 2011 will be published on 31 March 2011.

As part of improving the way in which tax policy is made, the Government has published the majority of measures for the Finance Bill in draft.

The intention is to keep the number of new additional measures that will subsequently need to be included in this Bill to a minimum. The draft clauses published today point to a significantly shorter Finance Bill than has been seen over the past decade.

In line with the Government's commitment to greater transparency, notes accompanying the draft legislation explain why each change is being made, who will be affected and the likely impacts of each measure.

Following the consultation Tax Policy making: a new approach, the Government has today announced improvements in the way in which tax policy is developed and legislated. The publication of draft Finance Bill clauses will become a permanent feature of the tax policy cycle. Taken together with other improvements, these reforms will reduce the volume and frequency of changes to the tax system, providing greater predictability and transparency.

David Gauke, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury said: “Today's draft finance bill marks a substantial improvement in the way we create tax policy. Not only is this draft finance bill the shortest in recent years, it is also the most transparent. By giving people and businesses time to adjust to these tax changes, as well as inviting them to comment on the changes, we are making tax policy significantly more accountable.'”


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