Imp. Letter in Today's Guardian re Close the Tax Havens.

mark at mark at
Thu Jun 28 11:13:30 BST 2012

From: 	Peter Hack <petercrispin at>
Subject: 	Imp. Letter in Today's Guardian re Close the Tax Havens.
Date: 	Thu, 28 Jun 2012 09:56:39 +0100 (BST)

Forgive me if this unwelcome but I copy to you a good letter from 
Michael Meacher ; I think it very, very important.

We have to stop the downward spiral that is gripping Europe and the 
rampant and endemic culture of corruption that is corroding public 

Here it is.

"Tax cheating by Jimmy Carr et al must not become a media game for 
celebrity baiting. The real issue is that last year according to HMRC 
42 billion pounds was lost through tax avoidance and evasion by 
multinational companies and super rich individuals; this is one third 
of Britain's entire budget deficit. The government then recoups the 
lost tax receipts by cutting benefits 18bn and public spending 81bn. 
This is a gigantic swindle from the poor to the rich.

Any government that thought tax avoidance was repugnant should now do 
5 things. It should pass a general anti avoidance bill principle bill 
that allows HMRC to declare null and void any scheme whose primary 
purpose was an artificial contrivance to avoid tax rather than any 
genuine economic purpose. My own Private Members Bill before the 
Commons aims to do just that. Second the Govt should seek a new 
international financial standard which requires mandatory country by 
country reporting by transnational companies to block the collosal 
loophole they use by transfer misspiricing. Thrid the EU's saving tax 
directive, which the UK has repeatedly tried to water down, should be 
strengthened to include offshore trusts, a favourite tool of the tax 
cheating industry. Fourth UK's non domicile rule should be abolished.

Finally UK's tax havens should be shut down. The UK's crown colonies 
hold 7trillion dollars of US bank deposits and hundreds of billions of 
sterling deposits dodging some 30 billion in tax. Unless they provide 
full information on all such funds then any transactions with such 
havens should be declared illegal".

Michael Meacher M.P. Guardian 28 June


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