Wealth tax

Posted on 15 Jan 2014
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MPs told wealth tax would be costly and complex Experts have told MPs that a wealth tax would be inefficient and difficult to impose. With a wealth levy among possible options as the UK looks at ways to cover the cost of the coronavirus crisis, analysts have told the Treasury Select Committee that a tax on the value of property, pensions and assets is likely to be counterproductive, saying that such policies have often proven unsuccessful in other countries, with many nations eventually abandoning them. Sir Edward Troup, a former first permanent secretary at HMRC, warned that calculating the wealth to be taxed would prove extremely difficult, telling the committee that while a wealth tax is possible, it would be complex and expensive, adding that it is unclear whether the resources it would require would “justify whatever you would raise from it.” Barrister Emma Chamberlain commented: "I am not sure we want to turn our nation into a nation of bookkeepers and v aluers, which an annual wealth tax may well force us into," while Arun Advani at the University of Warwick suggested ministers would be better off focusing on reform of inheritance and capital gains taxes, dismissing a wealth tax as “a poor second best”.

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