It has been revealed that the 422,000 workers in the City and Canary Wharf contributed £11bn last year through income tax – which is the same figure as the tax paid by the entire Scottish workforce.
According to research from Ambition, the amount of combined income tax and NI contributions paid by City workers is the equivalent to the total spent by the Government in 2009/2010 on winter fuel (£2.7bn), TV licenses for over-75s (£0.6bn), the entire wage and pension bill for the armed forces (£5.5bn) and aid in sub-Saharan Africa (£1.7bn).
Simon Lynch, managing director of Ambition UK, commented: “City workers come from an array of industries from law to accountancy, property to marketing. The amount they pay in tax goes a long way to help fund critical parts of the government’s expenditure.
“What’s more, £11bn doesn’t even come close to the overall sum the City pays in tax. Corporation tax, the levy on bonus pots and employers’ NI add a significant amount to the total haul the treasury receives.”
Again, to put things into a context, the average worker in the City and Canary Wharf has a remuneration package worth some £78,490 a year. The average UK salary is £23,556 a year.
Comment: Statistics are like a bikini: what they reveal is interesting but what they conceal is vital. Of course, you can prove anything with statistics but the key issue in this case should probably be who – (a) the workers in the City and Canary Wharf or (b) the entire Scottish workforce – should feel that they have the better deal out regarding their contributions to the UK’s Exchequer?