UK Chancellor Reveals Plans To Tax ‘Pandemic Profiteers’ After The Budget In March.
UK CHANCELLOR Rishi Sunak has revealed plans to tax retailers and tech companies whose profits have soared during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Sunday Times reported, citing leaked emails.
The government has apparently already summoned companies to discuss how an online sales tax would work, while plans are also being drawn up for a one-off “excessive profits tax”, the newspaper reported. Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak is, however, unlikely to announce these taxes at the budget announcement scheduled for March 3, which will focus on an extension of the COVID-19 furlough programme and support for businesses, the report said.
The tax proposals are instead likely to surface in the second half of the year. Sunak faces pressure from some in his Conservative Party to show spending is under control when he presents a new budget, after what is on track to be the heaviest annual borrowing since World War Two. He has promised to put public finances on a sustainable footing once the economy begins to recover.
The Office for National Statistics said borrowing hit £34.1bn last month, about £28bn more than the same month a year ago.
The increase took the government’s budget deficit – the gap between spending and tax income plus other receipts – to nearly £271bn for the first nine months of the financial year, a rise of more than £212bn compared with the same period last year, as the Covid-19 pandemic far outstripped the damage done by the 2008 financial crisis.
The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR), the independent forecasting unit, has estimated borrowing will hit £394bn by the end of the financial year in March.
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