Wednesday, 22 April 2009

McDonnell: 50p rate 12 years too late and tokenistic

John McDonnell MP, LEAP Chair, said:

"Although the 50p rate is a small step in the right direction, it really is twelve years too late and a tokenistic measure, given that the poorest will stay be paying more of their incomes in tax than the rich*

"For the Government to announce tax avoidance measures amounting to only £300m per year, is derisory when £100bn is estimated as lost to the Exchequer by tax avoidance."

*Currently, the poorest 20% of people lose nearly 40% of their total income in direct and indirect taxes, compared with a national average of 35.3%. The figure is 34.8% for the richest 20%.

Richard Murphy has a similar take: "It's a start . . . But they need to go much further to ensure more reliefs and allowances cannot be used to avoid their duty to society."

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