BoJo calls for chancellor to cut top rate of tax

Cheeky as ever, the mayor of London Boris Johnson has used a business convention in Mumbai to call for the top rate of income tax in the UK to be cut.

by Michael Northcott
Last Updated: 19 Aug 2013

You can always count on Boris either to come out with the funnies, or say something to wind up David Cameron. This time it’s the latter. Whilst on a trade trip to Mumbai Boris met local businesspeople on Friday morning, and was asked whether anything could be done to make London more attractive to foreign investors. By that, they obviously meant lower taxes or less regulation. BoJo obliged, saying that chancellor George Osborne should ‘brood’ on a reduction. 

Giving a speech at the Bombay Stock Exchange, he said: ‘You’ve got tax rates here of only 30% - a point George Osborne might like to brood on. It’s 10% for freelance income, and of course you have a market of about 600 million people under 25.’ The comments, as ever with Boris, are perfectly timed. Osborne’s Autumn Statement, in which some fiscal policies are likely to be announced, is next week. 

In interviews with journalists after his little soap-box moment, Boris added: ‘One businessman said to me this morning that he loved London, he loved the quality of life in London. There are so many attractions of living in London that you can’t find anywhere else. That is a very high card. But another businessman asked about making London more attractive in terms of tax and regulation and certainly the tax regime. As I have said many times before, that needs to be looked at.’

Boris has long beaten the drum for lower taxes, but no doubt Osborne and Cameron will be spitting feathers at his timing. They are under a lot of pressure to pull some good ideas out of the bag for the economy, and seeing Boris on a passage to India criticising the tax environment they have maintained must have them incandescent.

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

Upcoming Events

Latest on MT

The reason women are less likely to get graduate jobs

The reason women are less likely to get graduate jobs

Despite the high priority employers give to diversity, the gender gap in graduate recruitment persists.

Why Philip Green's savaged reputation matters

Why Philip Green's savaged reputation matters

The retail tycoon is still rolling in wealth but his public image could be problematic - and what about that knighthood?

Only 'radical honesty' can rebuild trust in business, and save us from Green and Trump

Only 'radical honesty' can rebuild trust in business, and save us from Green and Trump

Philip Green and Donald Trump are harbingers of a post-trust future that can only be avoided by a progressive revolution in business leadership.

'Don't be governed by risk' - Pitcher & Piano founder Crispin Tweddell's start-up cocktail

'Don't be governed by risk' - Pitcher & Piano founder Crispin Tweddell's start-up cocktail

The entrepreneur-turned-investor shares his recipe for success - know your customer and be ready to take a chance.

How Mike Ashley can fix Sports Direct's reputation

How Mike Ashley can fix Sports Direct's reputation

His company's name has been well and truly sullied, but Mike Ashley still has the chance to reform it, through transparency.

Get ready for the 'Lego' organization

Get ready for the 'Lego' organization

In a rapidly changing world, businesses will become amalgams of building blocks that come together for specific purposes.