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Data powers aim to make UK exporters more visible

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In Revenue & Customs Brief 26/2014, HMRC describes data sharing measures being taken forward in the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill, which was announced in the Queen’s Speech on 4 June and published on 25 June. The idea is to permit HMRC to release non-financial VAT registration data for specific purposes (principally credit scoring) to a small number of qualifying parties (for example, credit reference agencies).

HMRC is consulting, until 19 September, on a power to make regulations to permit the release of exporter data as open data. The aims are to make exporters more visible in the global marketplace in order to significantly increase the ability for foreign buyers to search for and buy British products and to help public and private sector efforts to provide better targeted and appropriate services to exporting businesses, especially SMEs.

David Gauke, exchequer secretary to the Treasury, said: ‘The data held by the public sector is among the most useful and valuable anywhere. This is why the UK government is at the forefront in making a step change in the availability of data held by the public sector, with the potential to deliver significant public benefits.

‘It is paramount that any data release has appropriate safeguards, essential to maintaining taxpayer confidence and protecting HMRC’s reputation. The proposal introduced in this consultation does not intend release of taxpayer financial or tax payment data.’

Issue: 1223
Categories: News , Indirect taxes , VAT