Tax heaven - students given "golden opportunity" to attend House of Commons debate

Participating in a discussion on future tax policy at the House of Commons has proved an "awesome experience" for students from De Montfort University Leicester (DMU).

Thirty students on DMU's Accounting and Finance undergraduate and master's courses headed to London for the debate entitled Responsible Tax: New rules for Brexit Britain?

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The group all study taxation in detail, so the aim of the trip was to put students' learning into context.

Michelle Roberts, course representative for Accounting and Finance BA, said: "I really enjoy the tax element of my course, especially how taxes are calculated and the effect they have on every one of us.

"Brexit is on everyone's mind, as it's still unknown how our country will come through.

"The fact they were both being discussed at the House of Commons debate was just such an amazing opportunity.

"Being able to hear first-hand from key figures what they intend to do with regards taxation and Brexit added another level to our studies."

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This is Michelle's second course-related trip in two weeks, having also visited the London Stock Exchange.

"Both trips were very relevant to our studies, giving us material outside of university that fits with our modules," she said.

"The staff here are amazing and the whole package makes learning at DMU addictive."

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Associate Professor Dawn Davison organised the House of Commons experience.

She said: "The Common Vision report announced that Brexit was an opportunity to reframe and reform the UK's outdated and cumbersome tax regime and suggests the Government needs to start looking at doing things differently in the tax world.

"Not only was this a fantastic opportunity to see inside the House of Commons and get a sense of British history but it was also an ideal chance to participate in the discussion on future tax policy and see how tax policies are shaped.

"Several of the speakers, including Anneliese Dodds MP, Shadow Treasury Minister, specifically mentioned how pleased they were to see many of the younger generation and the DMU students were thanked for attending."

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Kenneth Mumwiro, who is studying International Finance as one of his Accounting and Finance MSc course modules, described the visit as a "golden opportunity".

"It was an awesome experience being in the same room as an array of tax experts," he said.

These included Jill Rutter, from the Institute for Government, Caroline Macfarland, Director, Common Vision, and Kate Bell, Head of Economic Affairs, the TUC in addition to Ms Dodds.

Kenneth added: "On balance, I was a little disappointed that no actual debate took place. Instead, the panel of experts were unanimous in their call for a national stakeholder conversation on tax policy in the wake of Brexit.

"The silver lining for me was the Common Vision report, which is a welcome resource for my studies."

Posted on Wednesday 7th March 2018

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