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  1. Wealth
April 16, 2012

Guardian: A thousand millionaires pay under 30% in tax

By Spear's

The extent of tax avoidance by Britain’s super-rich has been revealed with the release of Treasury figures showing that almost a thousand UK taxpayers earning more than £1m a year have a tax rate of less than 30% of their income

The extent of tax avoidance by Britain’s super-rich has been revealed with the release of Treasury figures showing that almost a thousand UK taxpayers earning more than £1m a year have a tax rate of less than 30% of their income.

In an effort to get back on the political front foot over the budget, including its plans to impose a cap on tax reliefs, the Treasury also revealed that of the 200 taxpayers earning more than £10m a year, 12 are paying less than 10% in tax.

It is the first time the Treasury has published such comprehensive figures showing the tax rates of the super-rich. The figures formed the backdrop to the chancellor, George Osborne‘s recent admission that he had been “shocked” at statistics shown to him revealing the way in which the British super-rich use reliefs and legal schemes to avoid tax.

The Treasury has been on the defensive for more than a week over plans announced in the budget to cap the relief philanthropists can receive for charitable giving. Under the plans, to be introduced from 2013, previously uncapped tax reliefs – including on charitable donations – would be capped at £50,000 or 25% of income, if higher. The plan – billed ahead of the budget as a populist tycoon tax – has since gone disastrously wrong, as the Conservative press reported the plan as an assault on charitable giving.

The proposals – under repeated assault from universities, charities, philanthoposts and church leaders – suffered a fresh setback on Sunday night when the Charities Aid Foundation published a survey showing two-thirds of government backbenchers were opposed to the plans.

The new Treasury figures show 10,000 UK taxpayers earn between £1m and £5m, and, of those, 10% pay between 30% and 40% in tax, 5% pay between 20% and 30% tax, and 3% pay less than 10%.

To read the full story, visit guardian.co.uk

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