BUSINESS for Scotland is calling on George Osborne to scrap an “anti- entrepreneurial” plan to enforce the submission of four tax returns every year.

The pro-independence group has warned the Chancellor the plan – though well-intentioned – is administratively unworkable and will incur unnecessary cost and time, and it is encouraging the Scottish Government to oppose it vigorously.

Ian McDougall, co-founder of The Glasgow Distillery and BfS finance spokesman, said: “I’m in the fortunate position of being able to view this from two sides – that of an accountant who stands to benefit from increased business as a result of the proposed legislation and a business owner who stands to lose, due to what is time-consuming, unwarranted bureaucracy and additional costs.

“The truth is, this is unnecessary red tape that will inflict additional costs on small business owners.

“It will act as a disincentive to entrepreneurs, people considering becoming self- employed and very small businesses, who will be hit worst as they are the least able to afford the time, cost and frankly the stress that will accompany this proposed legislation.”

He added: “We would like to see this anti-entrepreneurial legislation dropped. Westminster should be looking at ways to remove the burden of tax administration and bureaucracy from small businesses, allowing them to focus on growing their companies and creating jobs, rather than getting in their way.”

The group’s other accountant members were similarly opposed to the policy, despite standing to gain extra fees, BfS said.

Overall, 97 per cent of the membership said they believed Mr Osborne did not understand the impact of red tape on SMEs and 92 per cent said it would add time, cost and stress.