Suppose prospective MPs were asked to sign a tax pledge before next year's general election? What might it say? This was an idea discussed at a PCS fringe meeting I spoke at last night. These are my ideas for a minimum commitment:
1. I oppose tax evasion and will demand that HM Revenue & Customs get all the resources and laws needed to beat it.
2. I am opposed to tax avoidance and will support all accounting and legal reforms aimed at exposing it.
3. I believe the tax avoidance industry harmful to the UK and will demand a General Anti-Avoidance Principle that will stop it in its tracks.
4. I believe tax abuse by multinational companies that use tax havens undermines developing countries and will demand measures to stop those companies and tax havens from undertaking that abuse.
And maybe these two are optional extras:
5. I believe that UK banks have prospered at a time when most in the UK have suffered and that the time has come to correct this. I support a Robin Hood Tax.
6. I believe in tax transparency and will put my tax returns on public record for the period during which I am an MP.
Any more thoughts?
Who will and won't sign?
I'm just thinking ahead.