Scottish Social Enterprise Coalition will lobby to make tax reliefs more effective

Community Interest Tax Relief and Enterprise Investment Scheme 'should be easier to to claim'

The Scottish Social Enterprise Coalition has pledged that lobbying the UK government to make existing tax reliefs more effective for social enterprises will be a "a top priority".

Antonia Swinson, chief executive of the SSEC, told Third Sector she hoped to meet Treasury officials to ask for amendments to Community Investment Tax Relief and the Enterprise Investment Scheme to make them easier for social investors to claim.

"At present, there are two tax reliefs that can be used by people who want to invest in social enterprise," she said. "But neither of them quite fit properly. We would like the government to look at how these models can be made more effective for social enterprises."

CITR can be claimed by investors putting money into the UK's 67 community development finance institutions, which are not-for-profit lenders to social enterprises and businesses in deprived communities. But there are many limitations that make it difficult to claim.

EIS allows investors buying a share in a small business to claim back the tax on their investment. But it is not often used by social enterprises because they rarely distribute their profits and so rarely offer equity.

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