Our Autumn Budget website, put together by our colleagues in the Tax team, is live. You can view it here: Autumn Budget 2021. Of particular note to our clients operating in the Technology Sector, is the announced expansion of R&D tax relief to include "data and cloud computing costs" as a class of qualifying R&D expenditure to which relief can be applied. The objective being to better support cutting edge research methods, and reinforce the UK's status as a 'science superpower'. The expansion represents recognition of how companies currently carry out R&D including small businesses that make use of cloud computing and data driven technologies. This fits with the Government's National Data Strategy, published last year, which sets out plans to build a world leading data economy, and also the Government's Top 10 Tech Priorities, one of which is 'unlocking the power of data'.
Relief will also be refocussed on R&D activity carried out in the UK, which could have a significant impact on businesses given the Office of National Statistics' estimate that nearly half of expenditure on which R&D tax relief was claimed in 2019 took place overseas.
Further details are expected in the autumn, and the changes are intended to be legislated in the Finance Bill 2022-2023, to take effect from April 2023.