Clause 72 - Identifying where the risk is situated

Part of Finance (No. 2) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:45 pm on 5 January 2022.

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Photo of Abena Oppong-Asare Abena Oppong-Asare Shadow Exchequer Secretary (Treasury) 4:45, 5 January 2022

I thank the Minister for her explanation of clause 72; it does seem like a straightforward clause that simply moves the criteria for determining where the risk is located into primary legislation. The Chartered Institute of Taxation has stated that the legislation does meet its stated objectives. For that reason, we do not oppose the clause.

I note that there has been wider consultation on the insurance premium tax, including on how to address the avoidance of the tax and how to reduce the administrative burden on HMRC and the industry. That is particularly important as HMRC has been under a lot of pressure—particularly during the pandemic. In the Government’s response to the consultation on the issue of IPT avoidance, they said that, on reviewing the responses,

“neither of the proposed options provide a proportionate solution to the issue this chapter sought to address. As such, neither option will be taken forward at this time.”

That seems like the Government have given up at the first hurdle. Why, if the proposed measures are not appropriate, are the Government not considering other measures to prevent avoidance in this sector?