Institutes launch new project on tax policy-making

25 Nov 2017

The Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT), Institute for Government (IfG) and Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) are launching a project to look at how we can improve the process around budgets and tax policy-making.

The IfG will contribute its understanding of policy-making and Whitehall processes, the CIOT its extensive practitioner expertise and the IFS its deep knowledge and analysis of fiscal policy.

The aim is to work together to produce a clear set of recommendations to the Treasury, Opposition and stakeholders on how to improve the UK tax-policy making process. The project will report around the time of the 2016 Autumn Statement.

Bill Dodwell, incoming CIOT President, said: ‚ The Chartered Institute of Taxation works for a clearer, simpler tax system for all those affected by it ‚ taxpayers, their advisers and the tax authorities. Our experience is that good tax policy comes from an open, consultative process in which all those affected have a voice, and where there is effective scrutiny to ensure policy intentions are translated into statute accurately and without unintended consequences. Our members see in their daily professional lives what happens when bad tax policy is introduced. We are pleased to be working with IfG and IFS, in the public interest, to identify ways the process can work better.‚

Jill Rutter, Programme Director, IfG, said: "The Institute for Government has long been concerned about the quality of tax policy-making and budgets. Recent events have underlined that many features of the budget process ‚ for example advance secrecy, lack of collective decision-making and low levels of scrutiny and evaluation ‚ are not conducive to successful policy-making. We are delighted to be working in partnership with experts at the IFS and CIOT to make tax policy better."

Paul Johnson, Director, IFS, said:

‚ The Government takes nearly £4 in every £10 earned in the economy in tax. How it does so matters enormously, and so does how it decides on tax policy. We at the IFS tend to look at the tax system that comes out of the policy making sausage machine. I‚ m delighted that we will be working with IfG and CIOT to look at how we might fix the machine such that it produces better policy in the first place.‚

We are keen to draw on as wide a range of views as possible. If you would like to contribute thought/ideas, please email tax [at] by 30 May.

Engage with us on twitter #bettertaxpolicy.

Blog by George Crozier, Head of External Relations, the Chartered Institute of Taxation