Boris Johnson and Rishi Sunak are reportedly at loggerheads over the imposition of a new £10bn-a-year tax to cut NHS waiting lists and fix the country’s social care crisis.
Johnson and health secretary Sajid Javid are said to be strongly in favour of the new levy, while the chancellor is opposed.
The Prime Minister said in his first speech outside Downing Street that he would fix social care “once and for all” and wants to have a new announcement on this on his second anniversary in office next month.
There is also pressure from Javid to get a hold of spiralling NHS waiting lists, which could go grow from 4.4m pre-pandemic to 13.3m.
Javid and Johnson want to raise £10bn a year, which could see an extra 2p on income tax or an extra 1 per cent added to employers’ National Insurance contributions.
The Sunday Times reports that internally Sunak is afraid of being labelled as a high taxing chancellor, after already announcing plans in March to hike corporation tax for the UK’s most profitable firms.
A Whitehall source told The Times: “It’s fair to say there are big differences of opinion and Rishi is not keen.”
Another added: “[Sunak] is concerned about raising taxes on families but we are committed to bringing forward a long-term plan to reform the social care system. We will set out proposals in due course.”
It comes as a part of an ongoing row between Johnson and Sunak over spending promises, with the Prime Minister announcing a series of expensive policies without consulting the Treasury.
This includes the new £200m Royal Yacht and billions of pounds of committed green spending at the G7 summit in Cornwall.