HMRC requests project delays to cope with Brexit

Tue 17th Apr 2018

HMRC has proposed that it stops or delays the delivery of a range of major efficiency projects so that it can manage its Brexit workload.

The request is contained within a letter sent from HMRC’s Chief Executive and Permanent Secretary, Jon Thompson, to Meg Hiller MP in her role as Chair of the Public Accounts Committee. The letter is an update on HMRC’s new customs declaration IT system, CDA. It updates PAC on an additional £260m funding requirement to meet the extra Brexit customs clearance load generated when the UK leaves the EU Single Market and Customs Union.

The letter proposes that a range of non-Brexit HRMC reforms be not started, stopped or stretched beyond their current completion dates. The projects under review are with HM Treasury Ministers, and will be confirmed ‘in due course’. Mr Thompson has previously stated that Brexit will generate a further 15% work for HMRC.

Potential initiatives to be delayed could include the consolidation of HMRC’s 170 local offices into 13 regional centres. Also, Making Tax Digital (‘MTD’), the VAT phase of which is to be launched on 1 April 2019, 2 days after Brexit. MTD will require 2.55million businesses to conform with new requirements to store data and report their quarterly VAT returns in digital formats.

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