LONDON - Britain's opposition Labour Party on Wednesday pledged to scrap tax rules that allow wealthy individuals to legally reduce the amount of tax they pay on money earned overseas, if the party wins a knife-edge national election on May 7.
The change would affect around 116,000 people who live in Britain but who currently are not required to pay tax on income earned abroad, unless they bring the money into the country, under the so-called non-domicile or "non-dom" tax rules.
The plan, to be formally announced by Labour leader Ed Miliband later on Wednesday, highlights the centre-left party's willingness to pitch itself against the wealthy in order to tip the balance of a tight election in its favour.
"There are people who live here in Britain like you and me, work here in Britain like you and me, are permanently settled here in Britain, like you and me, but aren't required to pay taxes like you and me because they take advantage of what has become an increasingly arcane 200-year-old loophole," Miliband will say according to advance extracts of his speech.
Labour estimated the changes, which could be implemented by April 2016, will bring in hundreds of millions of pounds to the public purse to help reduce Britain's budget deficit.
"We need to get the deficit down in a fair way and a balanced way and it's fair to say those with the broadest shoulders should make a bigger contribution," Labour finance spokesman Ed Balls told BBC radio.