According to Tim Sarson a tax partner at KPMG, Brexit represents an opportunity to devolve tax for corporations to the UK regions. This would spread investment across the country.
Mr Sarson’s comments came after the government had published its industrial strategy green paper and the Brexit announcements.
Mr. Sarson said: “Addressing regional imbalances is vital to improving the UK’s prospects outside the EU. There is already a precedent for this with Northern Ireland and there is also evidence of tax devolution making a real impact on the spread of investment in many countries including Switzerland, Germany and the United States. Tax devolution can be one of the pillars of an industrial strategy that take account of places as well as sectors. It’s an opportunity the government should grasp with both hands.”
KPMG also commented on whether the government should cut taxes after Brexit to attract foreign investment. In KPMG’s view this would be a step in the wrong direction. Multinationals are not clamouring for the UK to reduce its corporate tax rate, given that the rate is set to fall to 17 per cent by 2020. KPMG also said that if the government took any action which would be viewed as harmful tax competition by the remaining members of the EU might be counter-productive.
The government’s green paper outlines its strategy to drive growth across the UK, rather than just in the South East and London. The paper outlines the key challenges that would need to be tackled to improve economic growth and improve living standards in the UK.