Tax accountants could be in for a busy time

Tax accountants could find themselves in demand following the news that HMRC is to up its attempts to close the tax gap.

The Revenue recently revealed data showing that the amount of tax raised in the financial year to April 2010 was £35 billion less than was expected. HMRC said the gap had been closing in recent years but the fight must continue.

David Gauke, the exchequer secretary to the Treasury, explained that although the data shows that HMRC continues to reduce the tax gap, there is still more to be done. In the last few weeks the Treasury has closed tax avoidance loopholes, challenged people suspected of offshore tax evasion and formed a new unit within HMRC to make sure the UK’s wealthiest individuals pay their fair share of taxes.

Meanwhile, the UK’s small businesses say that excessive bureaucracy and taxation are preventing them from improving their green credentials.

The FPB recently published a report showing that 77% of smaller firms think it is possible to go greener, but 52% said green taxes hinder their ability to reduce their use of energy. Furthermore, 75% think the government’s current legislation favours larger organisations and does not take into consideration the problems faced by smaller companies.

FPB chief executive, Phil Orford, said small businesses do understand that going green has a positive impact on both the environment and their bottom line. But business owners need incentives and support to take on environmental processes rather than increased taxation.

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