The Chancellor of the Exchequer made it clear in his recent Pre-Budget Report that he would leave the current rules on tax relief for travel expenses unchanged. However, he also promised that the HMRC will refocus its efforts to ensure that the current regime is properly applied. He added: “If compliance does not improve, the Government may return to
this at a later date.”

The message to the industry is clear. We must clean up our own stables or face action that could undermine the industry. The easy option is to go on as before, hoping that the government has bigger fish to fry and won’t do what it has promised, but this may leave many stranded and again non compliant.

The AEMC, along with Crystal Umbrella & other members at the forefront have decided to be proactive and seek to build a strategic relationship with ministers and HMRC. The AEMC also wants the trade bodies’ presence to increase the understanding of the industry and its issues amongst parliamentarians of all parties.

It has therefore been decided to engage the services of a political adviser, Gary Kent, a veteran insider in Westminster who has worked for 22 years as a researcher, columnist and lobbyist for cross-party causes.

Gary Kent said: “the AEMC now has the opportunity to build itself as a respected trade association that can influence opinion-formers and decision-makers that its activities benefit temporary workers and the Economy as a whole. The sector must demonstrate that self-regulation can work for everyone.”

He added: “My aim is to bring AEMC representatives together with Parliamentarians, and others, to make it plain that the AEMC is deadly serious about compliance. It has to prove beyond reasonable doubt that it is willing and able to step up to the plate. Even if the sector wasn’t interested in politics, politics is interested in the sector.”

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