I'd be happy to pay more than 50p tax rate, says Rose


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The Independent Online

Sir Stuart Rose, the former head of Marks & Spencer, has urged the Government to keep the 50p tax rate for top earners, and said he personally would be prepared to pay more tax to see the UK through its debt crisis.

Sir Stuart said that he would rather keep the tax, introduced by Labour Chancellor Alistair Darling in the wake of the bank crisis two years ago, than face the embarrassing task of having to explain to staff why he was more deserving.

His unexpected intervention knocks a dent in the well-orchestrated campaign to get the top rate scrapped. Both David Cameron and the Chancellor, George Osborne, have said they regard it as temporary.

Mr Rose told the BBC's Hard Talk: "I don't think that they should reduce the income tax rate. How would I explain to my secretary that I am paying less tax on my income, which is palpably bigger than hers, when hers is not going down? If in the short term a case was made for me to pay more than 50 per cent tax, which would help UK plc, I personally – Stuart Rose – would be prepared to pay more tax."