The oil and gas sector is being urged to start preparing for the introduction of new employee legislation which could have a significant financial impact.

HM Revenue and Customs has launched a consultation on proposals to increase its powers to enforce payment of pay-as-you-earn and national insurance contributions where staff have been employed in the UK by organisations based outside Britain.

Martin Findlay, an international tax expert at professional service firm KPMG, said: “The legislation has not yet been issued and, therefore, the consultation at this stage is on the principles.

“The devil will be in the detail and that can only be studied next month. Now is the time to assess the potential consequences as it is clear that the main planks of the proposals will be implemented.”