Wake Up On Tax, Cameron Tells Companies
David Cameron has declared that companies who want to do business in Britain must pay their fair share of tax in a strident speech at Davos.
In a short speech at the World Economic Forum, Mr Cameron told an audience of CEOs and investors: "I am a low-tax Conservative but I'm not a companies-should-pay-no-tax Conservative."
"Individuals and businesses must pay their fair share," he insisted as he urged world leaders to ramp up efforts to counter corporate tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance.
"This is a problem for all countries not just for Britain," the Prime Minister said.
In some of his strongest language about the issue to date, Mr Cameron turned on businesses using intricate mechanisms to minimise their payments.
"Any businesses who think that they can carry on dodging that fair share or that they can keep on selling to the UK and setting up ever-more complex tax arrangements abroad to squeeze their tax bill right down - well, they need to wake up and smell the coffee because the public who buy from them have had enough," he said.
The Prime Minister did not mention any companies by name but both Starbucks and Google have recently come under fire for manipulating transfer prices to shift profits into low tax jurisdictions.
Starbucks and Google both insist that they fully comply with UK tax law but the revelations about their payments, among those of other firms, sparked a major backlash last year.
Mr Cameron shrugged off concerns that his stance on tax, coupled with his position on Britain and the European Union, would deter investors.
He insisted the changes in Europe could not be ignored and pointed to low corporation tax rates in Britain as a boost for businesses.
"I think Britain has a great offer for businesses. We are cutting our tax rates and going to be one of the most tax competitive countries anywhere in the world," he said.
"It is a perfectly fair argument to make to say we will cut our tax rates and be competitive but in return we do ask that people pay their fair share."
what do you think?
Tackle tax fraud - since it cost the other taxpayers FIFTEEN BILLION UK POUNDS in 2011. Far more than any other fraud but you wouldn't think so hearing the propaganda from the likes of Hoban and IDS. facebook.com/endpropaganda
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IDS smarmy sod
Your toff mates aren't going to like that Dave. Instead of swiss bank accounts, in the future its going to be a spade a bag of cash, and dig a hole somewhere in the Chilterns
They are digging a hole in the Chilterns a big one for High Speed Rail with no business case costing billions.
Tax avoidance ???? It doesn't matter where you register your company, each of your locations in the uk, should be liable as a separate entity, and taxed as a uk business.Not to be protected under the umbrella of the head office, based in Switzerland, eh Mr Green. If you earn a pound in this country, you pay tax on it, not offset it on your global liabilities. It's not hard , but it will upset the Bransons, and so will never happen. Camoron hasn't got the gumption, so targeting the tax evaders, means looking at the poor again. As per usual.
talk about cracking down David Cameron needs to cut down on immigration for a start.
Orange/Sky, the headline says ''tax avoidance'', but in the first sentence you say ''tax evasion''. One is legal, the other isn't. If you don't know the difference, you shouldn't be journalists.
stew you don't expect Sky to get that right do you they have only just learnt joined up writing
Since my comment they've altered the headline and the content.
If Cameron was sincere in what he says about tax evasion he would start with british Companies who are registered abroad but only trade in this country.Boots the chemists for eg. You dont need international agreement for that Then there are foreign owned like Starbuks who set up here and only pay a donation to the tax system, they should pay the full rate or sent packing. Britain knows how to run coffee shops. There are many more including foreign car makers and wind turbine builders who set up business here some only employing a token Brit. workforce.They also largely ignore our tax system while all the profit gets shipped out of Britain While this highly corrupt system exists we will be known as soft touch Britain But Camerons controllers will do anything but act
More words and waffle, lets see some actions.
This subject is political hype - a red herring - flavour of the month. Tax planning is legit and what is ignored is that companies pay assorted taxes so if little David and his buddy at Nbr 11 want to increase their tax take then lower the corporation tax threshold to make it more competitive to be in the UK than Switzerland or Luxembourg. Such an approach would also help unemployment and again increase tax revenues. This would save millions in what will be lengthy and costly investigations and failed court cases the outcome of which will be more avoidance measures - instead David is trying to play on social conscience by playing to the left (but then he does have to keep Clegg happy)
Perhaps the government should re-introduce Advance Corporation Tax (ACT) but not against dividends paid (as it used to be) but against transactions so that companies like Google, Amazon and Starbucks etc will have paid the tax just by trading. If and when they receive their annual corporation tax demand, this ACT can be off-set against the liability. If they claim that there is no liability, this is carried forward for offset use for the next 6 years, after which it would be lost. This is a process that worked reasonably well a few years ago when dividends were paid to shareholders.
FINALLY, someone that dosn't just b!tch but actually offers a reasoned suggestion that can be debated about! Personally I like this idea would solve alot of problems when it comes to taxing auction sites.
The idea failed because of cash flow issues much prefer lowering and making this the place to be as it has far reaching economic advantages beyond simple tax take
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Its time Cameron, the Treasury and HMRC.woke up. The companies Cameron is feferring to are wide awake. The law needs to be changed. Cut corporation tax as well