The London mayor’s comments risk stirring up tensions between himself and chancellor George Osborne, who has refused to remove the higher band.
Speaking to Management Today magazine, Johnson said: “It’s not right that an entrepreneurial city such as London should have a top tax rate higher than most of its competitors.
“People respond to hostile signals. Our message should be that we’re open for talent from all over the world.”
A spokesperson for the mayor said last night: “The mayor’s words are not meant to be inflammatory, he is calling for something the government has said it ultimately wants to do.
“The top rate comes on top of other things that make it more difficult in London, such as the bonus tax and the banking levy. All these add up to a fairly hostile mood for the City.”