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Taxation: Charitable Donations

Volume 461: debated on Tuesday 12 June 2007

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the gross cost of gifts and shares given to charities was in each year since the implementation of the current regime for such giving. (140762)

Relief from income tax is available to individuals making qualifying gifts of shares to charities. The value of such gifts where tax relief was claimed is as follows:

Year of donation

Value of gifts of shares (£ million)

2000-01

220

2001-02

160

2002-03

90

2003-04

210

2004-05

200

A corresponding figure for 2005-06 will be published in Table 10.2 on the HMRC website at the end of June 2007.

Figures for donations of shares to charities from companies are not available.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what recent studies he has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on private philanthropy. (140764)

The Government are committed to encouraging philanthropy and published a report on 4 May this year entitled “Charitable Giving By Wealthy People”. The report was commissioned to identify the incentives for wealthy people to engage in charitable giving as well as the barriers that may prevent them from doing so. The report can be found on the HM Revenue and Customs website: www.hmrc.gov.uk.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what tax incentives relating to giving to charities are in place; and what the cost of each was to the public purse in each of the last five years. (140765)

There are several tax incentives available to individuals wishing to make financial donations to charity. These include gift aid, payroll giving, relief on gifts of shares and securities and land and buildings. Gifts of assets to charities are also exempt from capital gains tax and the value of outright gifts and bequests by individuals to UK charities are completely free of inheritance tax, subject to certain provisions preventing donors retaining some degree of interest. Full details are available on the HMRC website at http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/donors/tax-efficient.htm.

Estimates of the costs of reliefs on donations to charities by individuals are also published on the HMRC website.

Figures for the basic rate relief on gift aid donations can be found at table 10.1 http://www.hmrc. gov.uk/stats/charities/table10-1.xls

Table 10.2 http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/stats/charities/table10-2.xls contains the costs of the following reliefs to individuals:

Higher rate income tax relief on gift aid donations;

Income tax relief on payroll giving donations;

Income tax relief on gifts of shares, securities and real property;

Inheritance tax relief on bequests to charities.

Figures for relief from capital gains tax and corporation tax on charitable donations are not available.