He did not provide details on these measures, leaving them to be spelled out in greater detail in the full, 112-page Budget statement, which appeared on the Treasury’s website shortly after his speech ended this afternoon.
“This government is not going to let you get away with it,” Osborne said, in his address to Parliament, as he outlined his 2013 Budget, which had been billed in advance as a Budget for hard times.
Later, he added: “We will name and shame the promoters of tax avoidance schemes.”
Osborne said the new crackdown on tax avoidance and tax evasion would bring in as much as £3bn in additional revenue to the Treasury, of which “over £1bn” was expected to come as a result of recently-signed agreements with the Isle of Man, Guernsey, and Jersey.
The announcement of the agreement with Jersey was announced just hours before, by Jersey’s chief minister.
The other £2bn he said would come from “new rules to stop the abuse of partnership rules, corporate tax losses and offshore employment intermediaries”.
Further details on what is being called the Government’s new "Offshore Evasion Strategy", which had been flagged up in advance of the Autumn Statement, is further spelled out in a 22-page document, now available on HM Revenue & Customs’ website. Entitled "No Safe Havens: Our Offshore Evasion Strategy 2013 and beyond" it may be read and downloaded from the HMRC website by clicking here.
Other key points contained in Osborne’s speech, and in the Budget statement:
- The UK’s corporate tax rate, which is due to fall to 21% next year, will drop a further percentage point, to 20%, as of April 2015, giving Britain what Osborne said was “the lowest business tax of any major economy in the world”
- Stamp duty on shares traded on growth markets, such as the London Stock Exchange’s Alternative Investment Market, will be abolished, in order to encourage the growth of medium-sized companies and start-ups by making capital cheaper to obtain
- As announced last year, qualifying recognised overseas pension schemes will need to re-notify HMRC every five years that they continue to meet the requirements to be QROPS. Former QROPS will also have to continue to report payments out of transfers received, while they were QROPS, and there will be additional reasons for excluding a pension scheme from being a QROPS
To read and download the full Budget statement from the Treasury’s website, click here.