“The UK’s tax avoidance legislation is stronger than anything required by EU law, current or proposed, at the tune of Brexit.
“Brexit was nothing to do with tax avoidance.”
A replying Twitter user responded with a host of laughing and crying emojis, saying: “Goooo Tories Protecting our Assets.”
The issue of Brexit and tax avoidance was a hot topic back in 2019, and has consistently inspired contradictory arguments in the Remain and Leave camps.
Actor and writer David Schneider drew headlines coverage in October 2019 when he tweeted about leaving the EU and its implications on tax.
“For God’s sake, guys! Get Brexit done!
“There are a whole lot of rich Brexiters who are going to be in all sorts of trouble if we’re still in when the EU Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive deadline hits on 1st January. #WithdrawalAgreement.”
Mr Schneider was referring to the EU directive which was installed to try and ensure that companies were paying their way with tax.
It was particularly targeted at multinational companies and those in the digital sphere.
However, as the BBC pointed out at the time, the laws on tax avoidance would have come into effect regardless of the UK’s status in the UK because they were already part of UK law.
As the broadcaster put it, “It’s hard to find anything happening in January 2020 to these rules that looks significant enough to influence the speed at which some people might want to leave the EU.”
It’s unclear where the idea that Brexit was a tool of tax avoidance came from, but the BBC traced it back to an article written by a couple of members of Lawyers for Brexit.
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The article has now been removed from their website.
The headline read: “Is this the real reason why Farage and Rees-Mogg want a speedy Brexit?”
The conversation around Brexit timelines and tax avoidance continued throughout 2019 and 2020 and was picked up by politicians and journalists over this period.
Labour MP, David Lammy, tweeted about the issue and linked it to the now-deleted article.
He wrote: “The reason multimillionaire Brexiteers are unhappy with laws being made in Brussels?
“The EU Anti Tax Avoidance Directive coming into force this year may mean they actually have to pay their fair share towards public services.”