James Ashton: Red cards and red braces at Chambers of Commerce
A panel debate I took part in on Tuesday at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) annual conference combed through the issue of whether this economic recovery was good or great.
At the end of the hour, a majority of red cards were held aloft signifying that the delegates thought that greatness was still some way off.
Before we got that far, fellow speakers Andrew Sentance, the former Bank of England rate setter, and economist Vicky Pryce predictably fell out about the pace of interest rate rises. But they had a rare agreement of sorts when the conversation turned to tax and its reform. The red-braced markets commentator Justin Urquhart-Stewart made the case for tax being paid on outputs rather than inputs – sensible when the Government is imploring doubting businesses to invest more. Of course George Osborne has little room to cut the overall tax take with a deficit to reduce. Hence a £1bn sop to the high street instead of a pledge to review before 2017 business rates that rake in £26bn a year.
Mr Sentance thinks there is a good case to reform VAT in the next parliament, when there should be more flexibility in the public finances, to the benefit the population at large. After calls for the 40p income tax rate to be scrapped, one of the major parties should really grasp this nettle.
John Moore starred in Coca Cola and Morrisons adverts
Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy
New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning
Former boxer recalls incident when he was seven years old
Charlie Sheen could be set to revive his role as a hedonistic womaniser
Review: Mike Leigh's biopic is a rambling, rich character study
Want to ward off (or welcome) trick-or-treaters? Here's how
- 1 'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
- 2 Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
- 3 Topshop at centre of row over body image as 'shocking' skinny mannequin photo goes viral
- 4 If you think Russell Brand’s new book is confused, you should read what his critics have to say about it
- 5 Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
'Nasa Confirms Six Days of Darkness in December': No, they don't - it's a hoax
Canadian actor punched in face after 'Islamophobia' experiment goes wrong in wake of Ottawa shooting
Halloween 2014: From the Screaming Man of Pluckley to the 'White Lady' of the Tower of London - Britain's 20 most haunted places
Russian politician says Apple CEO Tim Cook should be 'banned' from country after coming out as gay
Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
Pope Francis declares evolution and Big Bang theory are real and God is not 'a magician with a magic wand'
Huge surge in Ukip support after EU funding row, according to new poll
Ukip ‘exploiting grooming scandal’ to secure party’s first police chief
Nigel Farage: 'There’s nothing wrong with white people blacking up'
Maureen Lipman says 'she can't vote Labour while Ed Miliband is leader'
Muslims, immigration and teenage pregnancy: British people are ignorant about almost everything
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £35K: SThree: We consistently strive to be the...
£20000 - £23250 Per Annum pro rata: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Pro rata ...
£40 - 48k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Marketing Manager to join...
£45,000 - £65,000: Saxton Leigh: Our client is a well-known APAC Corporate and...