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28 Jan 2015 10:17am

Revenue Scotland open for business

Scotland’s devolved tax collection agency, Revenue Scotland, is prepared to start collecting taxes from 1 April this year

Revenue Scotland was officially established on 1 January to collect Scotland’s newly devolved land and buildings transaction tax and the Scottish landfill tax.

In December, an Audit Scotland report questioned whether Revenue Scotland would be ready to take over tax collection, warning that staffing and IT problems could impede its successful rollout.

Deputy first minister John Swinney has today written to the UK Government confirming that the agency is ready to collect taxes from 1 April, and asked for the necessary legislation to be laid at Westminster.

Mr Swinner said, “A group of senior Scottish and UK government officials have agreed that all necessary preparations are now in place and arrangements can now be made to introduce the devolved taxes.

“I have written to the financial secretary to the Treasury asking for the required orders to be laid at Westminster to allow Revenue Scotland to take the reins – effectively switching off stamp duty land tax and the UK landfill tax.

“These two new taxes are the first national taxes for Scotland in 308 years and it is important that they are administered fairly and correctly.

Last week, UK prime minister David Cameron unveiled draft legislation outlining plans for further devolved taxes and a timeline for when these new powers will come into force.

He said, “Be in no doubt, whoever forms the UK government after May 7, these new powers are guaranteed.

“The Scottish parliament will have more control of its tax and spending - making it one of the most powerful devolved parliaments in the world.”

Ellie Clayton

 

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