Wednesday 28 June 2023

From quantity to quality

How to have better, not just higher, taxes

Britain’s tax take has risen to a 70 year high. And while the pre-election clamour for tax cuts is growing, higher debt payments, struggling public services and tight fiscal rules mean taxes are just as likely to go up as down. But this rising quantity of tax revenue has not been matched by a rising quality of tax policy.

The system is a mess, with frequent fudges rather than reform, resulting in businesses unsure how their profits will be taxed. Some people are paying much higher tax rates than others with similar income levels. Our tax system is deepening, rather than helping resolve, some of the biggest challenges the UK faces – from housing to net zero. This needs to change if Britain’s taxes are to be fit for the decade ahead.

Should we expect higher taxes to last? Can higher taxes be better taxes – and what are the priorities for reform? How much difference could this make to the twin challenges of raising growth and reducing inequality? And do we need to rebalance our priorities between taxing labour, profits, consumption and assets?

The Resolution Foundation is hosting an in-person and interactive webinar – as part of The Economy 2030 Inquiry, funded by the Nuffield Foundation – to debate and answer these questions. Following a presentation of the key highlights from major new research, we will hear from leading experts on how to improve our tax system.

The event will be open for people to physically attend, alongside being broadcast via YouTube and the Resolution Foundation website. Viewers will be able to submit questions to the panel before and during the event via Slido.