Julia Irvine 15 Sep 2017 11:24am

Edward Troup to retire as HMRC chair

HMRC’s executive chair Edward Troup has announced that he is to retire from HMRC at the end of the year

He has been with the department for five years, during which time he has been tax assurance commissioner, head of former business group Central Tax and Strategy, and head of profession. Troup took over as chair of HMRC’s board in April 2016.

After qualifying and practising as a tax lawyer, Troup joined the Treasury in1995 as special adviser to the then chancellor Kenneth Clarke.

He returned to private practice in 1997 before returning to the Treasury as director, business and indirect tax in 2004. In 2010 he became director general tax and welfare before joining HMRC in 2012.

Commenting on his decision to leave HMRC, he said, “We have just delivered our best ever annual performance and I am immensely proud to end my professional career in tax in the department which is at the heart of the UK’s tax system.

“My colleagues across HMRC continue to deliver the vital work we do with huge talent and professionalism and the department is well on track to fulfil the vision of becoming a world class organisation.”

HMRC chief executive Jon Thompson said that Troup’s expertise and leadership would be greatly missed. “HMRC is without a doubt a better organisation thanks to Edward’s contribution, and we will certainly build on his achievements here.”

Frank Haskew, head of the ICAEW Tax Faculty said that he was surprised at the news. “We will be disappointed to see him go. He has always been very supportive of the profession and he has done a great job in trying to steady the ship after some difficult experiences of HMRC engagement with large businesses and the flack the department received from the Public Accounts Committee."

He also expressed the hope that, to avoid uncertainty, the government would act swiftly to put in place arrangements for his successor.

Troup may have decided that nearly 40 years in the tax world is enough, but he is also bowing out at a good time, ahead of the introduction of Making Tax Digital and the problems that Brexit is likely to bring for HMRC after years of staff cutbacks.

Thompson told the Treasury Select Committee yesterday that HMRC would need thousands of new staff ahead of the UK’s departure from the European Union to help cope with the new border controls and duties arrangements at UK ports.