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Tax Law Rewrite Project

Volume 712: debated on Thursday 16 July 2009


My right honourable friend the Financial Secretary (Stephen Timms) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.

As the Tax Law Rewrite Project will soon complete the work of rewriting mainstream direct tax legislation, it is necessary to consider whether it should rewrite other parts of the direct tax code.

Since it was set up, the project has played a key role in modernising tax legislation and making it far more accessible and easier to apply. Its work has rightly been widely praised and has provided considerable benefits for users. However the benefits of rewriting other parts of the direct tax code are less clear and there is less support for extending the work of the project into these areas. I am satisfied that when the project's next two Bills are enacted, the time will be right to bring this work to an end.

The achievements of the project would not have been possible without the dedication of everyone involved. Many tax professionals in the private sector have given their time and expertise in reviewing and improving the new provisions during their development, in a productive partnership with HM Revenue and Customs. Their input, and the guidance of the project's steering and consultative committees, have been vital in achieving the excellent quality of the rewritten legislation.

With the completion of the project's work, legislation for the mainstream direct taxes will be much easier for users to navigate and understand.