The measures appear to be closing a tax loophole. On that basis, we do not oppose them, especially as they are estimated to bring in £130 million in this financial year, rising to a peak of £640 million in 2019-20. I must say, however, that this important addition to the Bill was tabled rather late in the day, even if the outline of the measure itself was announced for consultation at the Budget. It could be argued that the Opposition and stakeholders have been given insufficient time to go through the detail of the legislation.
None the less, the Chartered Institute of Taxation has identified two areas of concern on which it would like some clarification. First, will the Minister confirm that the Government do not intend pure investment structures to be affected by the new measures? Secondly, will he confirm that new clause 16 is simply a timing rule dealing with the opposition of pre-trading expenditure that would not be deductible under normal principles and where reliance needs to be placed on section 61 of the Corporation Tax Act 2009? The concern is that the clause seeks to restrict normal trading expenses incurred prior to the company’s falling within the new charge. Some clarification from the Minister on those points would be appreciated.