Osborne: Bank levy to be permanent

A levy on bank balance sheets will be made permanent, potentially raising billions of pounds, Chancellor George Osborne has confirmed.

The chancellor said he would introduce legislation on Thursday in order "to extract the maximum sustainable tax revenues from financial services".

He said he wanted banks to make a fair contribution.

The banking industry said the move would have an impact, particularly on overseas banks operating here.

"We neither want to let banks off making their fair contribution, nor do we want to drive them abroad," the chancellor said.

"Many hundreds of thousands of jobs across the whole United Kingdom depend on Britain being a competitive place for financial services," he added.

The levy is not expected to affect smaller banks and building societies but the UK operations of foreign banks will have to pay the levy.

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