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UK Now More Attractive As A Business Location

by Robert Lee, Tax-News.com, London

16 March 2016


Tax policies introduced between 2010 and 2015 have made the UK a more attractive location for businesses, according to a new survey by professional services firm KPMG.

KPMG has published a report that assesses the UK's relative competitiveness in 2015 in comparison with its international peers. The findings are based on a survey of 102 senior decision makers in the UK's largest businesses, and of 65 companies from across India, China, Japan, Australia, Canada, and the US. This is the 10th year KMPG has carried out such analysis.

According to KPMG, "Ireland retains its place as the most competitive tax regime in 2015 compared to other European countries generally held to have business-friendly tax systems, but the UK has closed the gap considerably this year and is now seen as much more competitive than its European peers generally viewed as having attractive tax regimes."

Robin Walduck, Tax Partner at KPMG in the UK, explained: "When we first published this survey a decade ago the attractiveness of the UK's tax regime was in question as a number of high-profile companies had announced plans to relocate business activities out of the UK. The dial has moved since then with the number of companies looking to relocate falling sharply. Now, the UK is generally seen as an attractive place to live, work, and do business and has shown a renewed ability to attract and retain some of the world's most valuable companies."

He added: "It's clear that the package of tax policies introduced over the past five years has resonated with companies and has also elevated the UK's tax regime to a position where it credibly competes with the regimes of other major international economies. This new strength and stability should bolster the UK's ability to both retain business functions and attract international companies to relocate into the UK. However, the sentiment among senior tax executives overall is that the UK should focus on sustaining and building upon recent improvements to the tax regime, rather than pursuing any major reforms."

Among those surveyed, "stability" was identified as the key factor for companies when considering the attractiveness of a country's tax regime. "Advance warning of major changes" was ranked second, and "simplicity" third. A "low effective tax rate" has been ranked in fourth place for three years in a row.

TAGS: tax | business | India | Ireland | tax incentives | corporation tax | Australia | China | United Kingdom | tax rates | Canada | United States | tax reform | Japan | services

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