Select Committee on Treasury Minutes of Evidence



  1.  The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales ("ICAEW") is the largest accountancy body in Europe, with more than 128,000 members. Three thousand new members qualify each year. The prestigious qualifications offered by the Institute are recognised around the world and allow members to call themselves Chartered Accountants and to use the designatory letters ACA or FCA.

  2.  The Institute operates under a Royal Charter, working in the public interest. It is regulated by the Department of Trade and Industry through the Accountancy Foundation. Its primary objectives are to educate and train Chartered Accountants, to maintain high standards for professional conduct among members, to provide services to its members and students, and to advance the theory and practice of accountancy, including taxation.

  3.  The Tax Faculty is the focus for tax within the Institute. It is responsible for tax representations on behalf of the Institute.



  1.  The Chancellor of the Exchequer announced in July 2003 a major review of the organisations dealing with tax policy and administration. During the course of summer 2003 we met with HM Treasury officials involved in the review and in October 2003 submitted a paper TAXREP 39/03 (available at setting out our detailed comments and suggestions. The culmination of the Review was the publication in March 2004 of the HM Treasury Report Financing Britain's Future: Review of the Revenue Departments which we will refer to as the O'Donnell Report.

  2.  The Committee held an evidence session on 12 May 2004 in relation to the O'Donnell Report and we submitted written evidence TAXREP 18/04 (available at which is available on our website. The then Chairman of the ICAEW Tax Faculty presented oral evidence before the Committee.

  3.  We submitted evidence to this Committee in November 2006 prior to its evidence session on the 2005-06 accounts of HMRC which reflected its first 12 months' existence. The annual report was coupled with the NAO report on those accounts. Our evidence concentrated on the three main topics covered in the NAO report: tax credits, PAYE and MTIC fraud.

  4.  We have concentrated our comments on the key issues which we believe are fundamental to the future success of HMRC.

January 2007

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