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Title: British Chambers of Commerce – Quarterly Economic Survey
Department: British Chambers of Commerce
The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) Quarterly Economic Survey – Britain’s largest and most authoritative private sector business survey, based on more than 8,500 responses from firms in Q1 2016 – suggests that growth in the UK economy continued to soften in the first quarter, with most key survey indicators either static or decreasing.
Companies to be liable for employees who facilitate tax cheating
Press releases – HM Government – Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street, The Rt Hon David Cameron MP
The UK will bring forward plans to introduce a criminal offence for corporations who fail to stop their staff facilitating tax evasion, the Prime Minister will announce today in a statement to the Commons, ahead of next month’s summit to tackle corruption in all its forms.
For the first time, companies will be held criminally liable if they fail to stop their employees from facilitating tax evasion. At the March 2015 Budget the Chancellor said the government would be delivering on its pledge to introduce the measure in this Parliament. Today the Prime Minister is confirming that the offence will be introduced in legislation this year.
The move is part of the government’s efforts to clamp down on corruption in all walks of life. The government has already confirmed plans to create a cross-agency taskforce to investigate all evidence of illegality that has emerged from the so-called ‘Panama Papers’.
£9m leaflets ‘should reflect both sides’
Former defence secretary Liam Fox has written to David Cameron demanding both sides of the EU referendum debate be reflected in the government’s controversial £9.3m campaign leaflets.
Mr Fox urged the PM to “correct the imbalance” to include EU Out campaigners’ views.
Meanwhile Conservative backbenchers plan to use a vote on the Budget to challenge the leaflet expenditure.
The PM says voters should know the government’s case for EU membership.
The first batches of the government’s leaflet – which will go to every home in the UK – are being delivered in England, before going to Scotland , Wales and Northern Ireland after the 5 May devolved elections.
Out campaigners have reacted furiously to the leaflets – which come before strict spending limits kick-in ahead of the 23 June referendum – and more than 200,000 people have signed a petition calling for them to be scrapped.
In his letter to Mr Cameron, Mr Fox said the money should be spent on the NHS rather than a “one-sided piece of propaganda”.
He said: “The current proposal effectively doubles the budget for the Remain campaign and will offend the natural spirit of fair play that is so much a part of the character of the British people.
“If the government intends to go ahead with this publication, then I suggest you consider correcting the imbalance by allowing the opposite side to include the alternative view.”
Veteran Conservative MP Sir Bill Cash, meanwhile, is spearheading an amendment that could block the progress of the Budget in protest at the plans.