Businesses call to scrap 50p tax

Thursday March 1st, 2012

In a letter to the Telegraph newspaper, more than 500 business leaders have called for the government to get rid of the 50p tax rate.

The letter by the 537 self-described ‘wealth creators’ urges Chancellor George Osborne to scrap the top rate of tax to help ‘stimulate industry and contribute to the Government’s growth agenda’.

The leaders say they believe the 50p tax is damaging as it discourages job creation and is motivated by ‘populist politics’ and that it is penalising high earners unfairly.

The letter reads: “The tax, which is in effect a 58p tax after national insurance is taken into account, puts wealth creators like us in a very awkward position.

 “As business people, we want to see our industries, our economy and the Third Sector thrive. Repealing the 50p tax would demonstrate the Chancellor’s wish to celebrate British entrepreneurialism, stimulate industry and contribute to the Government’s growth agenda.”

Business leaders are funding a campaign against the tax rate of 50p in the pound.

Shadow chief secretary to the Treasury Rachel Reeves said : “When millions of families and pensioners on middle and low incomes are being squeezed by the VAT rise and cuts to tax credits, cutting taxes only for the richest 1% cannot be the right priority now.

“But these business owners are right to call on the government to take action to stimulate growth and jobs in our economy.”

A Treasury spokesman said: “We have said we regard 50p as temporary and have asked HMRC to report on its effectiveness. We have not set out a timetable for any change in policy.”

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