High tax rate on U.K.'s wealthiest to stay

Jan. 9, 2012 at 1:06 PM
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LONDON, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- A 50 percent tax rate on Britain's highest earners will stay in effect until at least 2015, government officials said.

"We need to ask those with the broadest shoulders to contribute the most," an official spokesman for Prime Minister David Cameron told The Daily Telegraph Monday.

"The Prime Minister has always been very clear that the 50 percent rate should only be temporary," he said of the rate introduced in 2010 by former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, "but that in our efforts to reduce the deficit we need to demonstrate that we are doing that in a fair way."

The final decision on the rate's future is seen as being up to Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne.

Cameron and Osborne likely consider abolishing the levy as politically impossible in the near future amid fears they would be accused of pandering to the wealthy, analysts said.

"This is not now something we are moving on any time soon," a senior government source told The Daily Telegraph.

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