An update on the progress of the Finance Bill through Parliament.
On 7 November 2018, Finance Bill 2018-19 was published and we have updated you on some of the key measures and its progress through Parliament in the last three editions of Tax Matters Digest. A substantial number of provisions of the Bill were agreed to without amendment at the first and second sittings of the Committee of the Whole House which took place on 19 and 20 November 2018. However, the Government accepted four opposition amendments and new clauses during those debates reflecting the unusual political circumstances in place currently. As widely reported in the media the Government also moved amendments of their own on the timing of new restrictions on fixed odds betting terminal stakes, bringing forward the changes to 1 April 2019. The Bill is now being discussed at the Public Bill Committee which commenced on 27 November 2018 and will conclude on 11 December 2018.
Committee of the Whole House proceedings
During the first and second sittings of the Committee of the Whole House which took place on 19 and 20 November 2018, a large number of key provisions of the Bill were agreed to without amendment, including those relating to:
Two new clauses were added to the Bill following opposition amendments. They provide that within six months of Royal Assent to the Bill, the Chancellor is to lay reports before the House of Commons regarding the impact of various clauses (including Clauses 15, 16, 19 and 20) on taxpayers and on reducing tax avoidance and evasion. Opposition amendments requiring further reporting on international tax enforcement: disclosable arrangements (Clause 83) and a review of the wider effects of gaming duty were also passed.
Public Bill Committee Proceedings
At the Committee sessions of 27 and 29 November 2018, a number of clauses were agreed to without amendment, including:
Clause 13 and Schedule 1 on property disposals by non-UK residents were amended to repeal provision 2(2A) of the Corporation Tax Act 2009, thereby excluding certain chargeable gains subject to CGT from the ambit of corporation tax. This is a minor consequential change resulting from a Government amendment.
The remaining proceedings will take place on 4 December, 6 December and 11 December 2018. Meetings of the Committee will be brought to a conclusion at the 11 December session. The Bill will then be reported as a whole to the House as if it had been all considered in the Public Bill Committee. There have been suggestions that the Bill will get Royal Assent in the week commencing 17 December 2018 but this is not confirmed and, given the general uncertainty in Parliament at the moment, should not be relied upon. We will continue to keep you updated of any significant amendments or discussions in our upcoming editions of Tax Matters Digest.
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