ICAEW advocates bold future action for economy

Feb 23, 2024

The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) is pushing for significant reforms in the lead-up to the upcoming Spring Budget on 6 March.

Following consultations with its members and research findings, the professional body is advocating for the Government to simplify tax systems, eliminate growth barriers, address skill shortages, and capitalise on net-zero transition opportunities.

Despite low business confidence and stagnant economic growth post-pandemic, the ICAEW sees potential in new technologies. It also suggests reintroducing growth vouchers, establishing business start-up passports, and aligning R&D incentives.

Furthermore, the professional body emphasises the need for a modern, streamlined, and digital tax system to enhance productivity, urging the review of tax rate thresholds and the reduction of administrative loads on taxpayers and HMRC.

Highlighting the issue of prolonged delays in HMRC services in a separate communication to the Treasury, the ICAEW is advocating for improved HMRC funding and performance incentives.

The ICAEW has stressed the importance of skill development in the workforce, particularly in small businesses, for a successful net-zero transition. It also recommended a comprehensive net-zero strategy detailing public sector decarbonisation and business support.
Other recommendations to the Government include introducing a national skills strategy focusing on digital, financial, and technical education alongside more flexible and less bureaucratic apprenticeship schemes.

Michael Izza, ICAEW chief executive said:

"As we approach the end of this parliamentary cycle, the Government needs to prioritise the tackling of longstanding structural weaknesses that threaten to derail our economic potential."

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