Tory tax haven u-turn is a pre-election victory for Labour

The Cayman Islands: From the end of the decade, banks here will have to name people and organisations keeping their money here to avoid paying UK tax.

Labour can claim a major victory after the Conservative government gave in to a backbench demand for overseas tax havens to introduce registers of public ownership, naming people and organisations hiding money there.

Even though the amendment to the Sanctions and Money-Laundering Bill was brought jointly by Labour’s Margaret Hodge and Conservative Andrew Mitchell, it is unlikely that the latter will get much credit because his party – the government – tried to table a series of compromise amendments to water down the demand.

Commons Speaker John Bercow rejected them because they were submitted too late.

In the week of local elections when the amount of taxes people pay for services will weigh heavily on the minds of voters, the change could be a serious blow against the Conservatives.

Labour can now claim to be acting against tax avoidance – and can accurately say the Conservative government tried to protect people who dodge their taxes.

Britain’s overseas territories will be forced to adopt public registers of company ownership at the end of the decade after the government conceded it would have to support a backbench amendment designed to stem the global flow of “dirty money”.

Sir Alan Duncan, a Foreign Office minister, told the Commons that ministers recognised “the majority view in this house” and would not oppose from Labour’s Margaret Hodge and the Conservative MP Andrew Mitchell.

The retreat was forced on Theresa May’s government after the Speaker rejected a string of government compromise amendments, which would have watered down the disclosure commitment, because they were tabled so late. Afterwards, some of the overseas territories voiced their unhappiness at what had been agreed at Westminster.

Source: ‘Dirty money’: U-turn as Tories back plans to make tax havens transparent | World news | The Guardian

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3 thoughts on “Tory tax haven u-turn is a pre-election victory for Labour

  1. NMac

    What Tories say they will do, and what they actually do are two different things. Will this just be more empty rhetoric?

  2. hugosmum70

    i dont understand this tax haven stuff ill admit. i know its untaxed money the rich have stashed away in other countries. but as far as i can see this is giving them over 2 years to shift their money elsewhere. im sure most will do that too.

  3. Pat Sheehan

    I was just thinking! You never hear of ‘benefit cheats’ stashing all their ESA ‘offshore’. Funny that!

Comments are closed.