Quelle Surprise

Alex Cobham at the Tax Justice Network published this blog late last week and I think it worth sharing because it shows that whilst some in business now recognise that tax responsibility is an issue that they must address they are still a long way from being willing to address the issues in the way that commitment to the Fair Tax Mark would, for example, require. I share Alex’s disappointment that yet another PR exercise is distracting from what is really required:

The B Team, [who describe themselves] as the leading global group for responsible business, has released a report: ‘A New Bar for Responsible Tax‘. To our great sadness, it moves the bar in one direction – towards the bottom.

When the B Team first got in touch to discuss their plan to work with major multinationals to establish a new standard of tax transparency, we were excited. The one thing lacking so far in the process towards public country-by-country reporting has been a champion among the major multinationals – and that’s exactly who the B Team work with. Moreover, they have made some genuine progress towards beneficial ownership transparency for their own group structures. We felt their staff were on the right track, and we hoped that they would be able to take the business members with them.

It soon became clear that the members were less keen. But even so, the report which has now been released is desperately disappointing.

Competition for the Fair Tax Mark.

such a pity, eh?

8 thoughts on “Quelle Surprise”

  1. “Fair Tax Mark is now used in the UK by a range of businesses, from local firms all the way to FTSE 100-listed household brands such as the energy giant SSE plc.”

    To use one of Murphy’s favourite hyperbolic words it’s staggering how many entities are in that “range”. 35 after 4 years. 35. Staggeringly low. And of that 35 a sizeable number seem to be Co-ops of one kind or another.

  2. “Competition for the Fair Tax Mark.

    such a pity”

    Well done to the mischievous person responsible for Fair-Tax Organisation.

    Accreditation is free and self assessed.

  3. Oxfam passes two of the important tests.

    Spud approves of them.

    They have paid Spud money

    Candidly, the latter is much more important than the former.

  4. @BraveFart,

    They don’t like it when you remind them it’s been a flop or SSE and Midcounties have minimum wage convictions.

    Posted the same numbers to Ritchie, it was deleted. Posted on the TJN blog, it’s still waiting approval (although other comments have been approved after).

    Seems “open” and “accountable” doesn’t apply to themselves.

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