Government will respond to Making Tax Digital consultations in January 2017

Chancellor Philip Hammond has been widely criticised for failing to shed any further light on Making Tax Digital (MTD) during his Autumn Statement announcements. But a closer look at the documents made public on 23 November reveals that the Government has committed itself to publishing its response to MTD consultations in January 2017.

The MTD initiative was first announced in December 2015, with limited information made public until six consultation documents and one overview document were issued in August this year. These consultations closed on 7 November, attracting wide-ranging responses and criticism from the tax and business world.

Many have suggested that the Chancellor missed a beat in his failure to address MTD at the Autumn Statement following the consultation feedback – particularly in the wake of calls to delay the project, which were backed by the likes of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and the Association of Taxation Technicians (ATT).

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and taxpayers alike have long awaited clarity and certainty about MTD, but unfortunately, all have no choice but to continue to play the waiting game until January 2017.