As revelations that global firms pay limited tax in the UK continue to cause anger, entrepreneurs have called on the chancellor to put tax cuts for small companies at the top of his agenda for the Autumn Statement.
According to research by Hilton-Baird Financial Solutions, 59% of small business owners consider reductions in VAT, corporation tax and income tax as the most important action the government can take on 5 December to ensure business growth. Another 16% said funding initiatives will be of benefit.
Other findings from the report revealed some of the reasons behind the ongoing lack of business confidence, including uncertainty over the UK economy, the Eurozone crisis, and a lack of available funding. Only 34% of respondents reported securing new funding facilities in the last six months.
Evette Orams, managing director of Hilton-Baird Financial Solutions, said that the research demonstrates that high taxes are prohibitive to stability and growth for UK businesses.
"VAT has increased under this government, as has income tax for the highest earners, in an understandable effort to keep the deficit under control. However, it is clear that this is impacting adversely on their demand for goods and thus business growth."
Calls for tax cuts from small businesses come amid growing anger over revelations that several large, global companies pay limited tax in the UK.
A report published yesterday by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) confirmed that companies including Starbucks, Google and Amazon have been paying little or no corporation tax.
Margaret Hodge, chairwoman of the PAC, told The Telegraph: "At a time when small companies are being harassed by the tax authorities to pay their taxes, it is just not fair that that the big corporations don’t pay their fair share of tax. [HMRC] should aggressively pursue these multinational companies."
BusinessZone.co.uk will be providing live and interactive coverage of the Autumn Statement on 5 December.