The IoD notes a worrying tendency across government to levy increased fees on what may be described as the “beneficiaries” of government services. The Home Office, for instance, has increased charges relating to the issuing of visas for dependents. The Ministry of Justice has increased the cost of getting divorced. It would be of deep concern to IoD members if the Government extended this principle to the provision of administrative services to business – particularly when those administrative functions are legally mandated – or indeed attempted to plug gaps in the public finances via counter-productive charges such as a too-high Apprenticeship Levy.
Though the Spending Review is strictly separate from Budgets and Autumn Statements, the Spending Review and this consultation ought not to be seen in isolation from the wider public finance context: as previously stated, the government must seek to address the problem of over-spending not by increasing revenues, but by identifying necessary savings.
As such, below, the IoD lays out a number of proposals for both reducing spending, and our key priorities for tax reform and simplification. We are heartened by the recent period of economic growth, far outpacing competitor economies, and believe these policies will contribute to increasing economic growth even further.
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