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Taxation: Electronic Government

Treasury written question – answered on 31st October 2019.

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Photo of Caroline Nokes Caroline Nokes Independent, Romsey and Southampton North

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessments were undertaken on the negative effects on smaller, rural businesses of Making Tax Digital.

Photo of Jesse Norman Jesse Norman Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Paymaster General

By 24 October 2019 over 1.25 million businesses had joined the new MTD service and over 1.75 million VAT returns had been successfully submitted using MTD-compatible software.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have worked with and taken feedback from stakeholders including Defra and the National Farmers’ Union, to help shape the design and to understand the impact of the MTD service. An assessment of the impact on smaller, rural businesses is included within the wider Impact Assessment.

Broadband connectivity was presented as a particular challenge for some rural communities. The Government has committed more than £1 billion for the next generation of digital infrastructure, with the Chancellor recently announcing a £5 billion commitment to fund gigabit-capable (speeds of 1,000Mbps>) deployment in the hardest to reach 20% of UK premises. This will close the digital divide and ensure rural areas are not left behind.

Those that cannot go digital are already not required to join MTD.

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