Corporate tax avoidance (dubious but not
strictly illegal) was estimated by the TUC
(Trade Union Congress) to be £12bn for
the year 2008. Tax avoidance by individuals is
believed to cost the Treasury £13bn a year
Illegal corporate tax evasion comes to £70bn
a year and unpaid corporate taxes to £26bn
(TUC, 2010) a year – a total of £121 bn.
From here. Which is, I have to say, a lovely piece of Ritchiebollocks from start to finish.
But no, no one, not even Ritchie, says that illegal corporate tax evasion comes to £70 billion.
What Ritchie does say is that all of the tax that should be aid by the grey economy (that is, legal activities but ones which do not pay the tax due) amounts to £70 billion.
That figure is, to put it mildly, highly suspect. But it ain\’t corporate evasion. It\’s all evasion. And the vast majority of it will not be corporate at all. In fact, we\’d suppose, and we\’d be right to do so, that just about all of it is in the unincorporated sector.
Think it through for a moment. BP can indeed play tax avoidance games. But it can\’t have on its books money that they don\’t declare: putting it on the books is declaring it. This tax evasion is the grey economy: and corporates, by definition, aren\’t playing in hte grey economy.
Given that it\’s a Ritchie acolyte screwing up Ritchie\’s research in Ritchie\’s magazine I do hope for a correction.