In a video clip from the House of Commons posted online by a Labour colleague Salford and Eccles MP Rebecca Long-Bailey outlines serious concerns over the 2016 Finance Bill.
The 2016 bill seeks to cut Corporation Tax and Capital Gains Tax, which could mean high-profit companies will pay less into the system.
If passed into law, the Finance Bill would cut the rate of Corporation Tax to 17% from 2020 and the rate of Capital Gains tax from 28% at the higher rate and 18% at the lower rate to 20% and 10% respectively.
Labour tabled amendments to remove these cuts from the Bill, as well as to tighten up penalties for those who carry out offshore tax avoidance or allow it to take place.
A video posted on Facebook by John McDonnell MP of Salford and Eccles MP Rebecca Long-Bailey laying into the Bill has had over 107,000 views since it was posted last week.
Long-Bailey, who took over outgoing MP Hazel Blears’ seat in the 2015 general election, explained that with current austerity measures, “with pressure on the NHS, on the Armed Forces, on our teachers, our young people, the list goes on, quite frankly it’s not acceptable to seek to avoid your taxes.”
As Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury Long-Bailey led Labour’s opposition to the Finance Bill in Parliament.
She argued: “I think honourable members of all sides of this house have come to agree that tax avoidance should is something that should be fought.
“The trouble is, however, that this government has failed to tackle the problem head on, and simply tinkering about with piecemeal bits here and there – and this Finance Bill is no different.
“There is no evidence to suggest that cuts to Corporation Tax will help businesses to invest.
“Instead, the government should lead on the long-term investment this country desperately needs.
“Until [Chancellor] Philip Hammond decides to do so, Britain is on hold.
“The Tories have a clear choice; to decide whether to use any spare cash, of which they keep saying there is none, to help the most vulnerable, who have suffered six years of the Government’s austerity programme or to give tax breaks to some of the wealthiest people in our society – those who need it the least.
“They continue to choose the latter and that says it all about this government’s priorities.
“The Labour Party opposes this government’s economic approach based on cuts and under-investment – standing up for the millions of people who are suffering needless hardship under due to austerity.
“We will also be calling again for more action on tax avoidance we have been for the last year.
“We have to call tax avoidance out for what it really is: tax dodging.
“It is wrong.
“At a time of deep economic insecurity after years of austerity economics, we have to ensure that we have a fair tax system.”
Speaking to SalfordOnline.com this week Rebecca said: “I called for a full public inquiry of the UK ‘tax gap’ but this was refused by government.
“They have no interest in tackling the levels of abuse we have seen in recent scandals of offshore tax avoidance such as the Panama leaks.
Labour will lead the way on tackling tax avoidance with our Tax Transparency Enforcement Programme.
“By allowing the super-wealthy tax dodgers of the world to moor their superyachts and their money in such places, we ensure that billions of pounds, dollars and euros are lost to the public finances of the world.
“As a result, hospitals are not built, schools are not refurbished and jobs are lost.
“Misery and deprivation in our communities here in the UK is caused by tax avoidance, so it is time to stop taking piecemeal action in fighting it. It is time the government dealt with the problem head-on.”