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TaxWatch are as stupid as Murphy

The UK might have missed out on as much as £2bn in tax in 2021 from big tech companies shifting their profits elsewhere, according to an estimate by a group campaigning for greater tax transparency.

Seven of the biggest US-headquartered tech companies, including Apple, Microsoft and Google owner Alphabet, are estimated to have paid £750m in UK corporation tax and the digital sales tax, compared with £2.8bn in estimated tax due had profits not been routed elsewhere, according to TaxWatch, a campaign group.

Big multinational companies often have complicated structures using different subsidiaries around the world. In many cases that makes it near impossible for observers to calculate how much tax they have paid in the UK, and whether the amounts paid align with the amount of activity in the UK.

To try to get around the lack of data, TaxWatch estimated how much UK tax these global groups would have paid if their British subsidiaries declared profits at the same rate as they declare them worldwide. There is no suggestion that the companies involved have evaded taxes illegally.

But the profits are not made equally around the world. Google coding is largely done in CA. Therefore CA (part of the US) should get more of the profits and thus the tax. Etc. We’d all think it pretty weird of Rolls Royce taxes were allocated to where the engines were, no?

4 thoughts on “TaxWatch are as stupid as Murphy”

  1. The UK might have missed out on as much as £2bn in tax

    Think of how many refugee hotel rooms that £2Bn would’ve paid for. Or possibly another few feet of HS2, or a ban on plastic cutlery?

    The possibilities are limitless under the Conservatives.

  2. Martin Near The M25

    Yep, that’s almost enough to run the NHS for a week. We could have been rich.

    “compared with £2.8bn in estimated tax”

    In other words, a number they just made up.

  3. including Apple, Microsoft and Google owner Alphabet

    Alphabet doesn’t own Microsoft. The Oxford comma isn’t always superfluous.

  4. “that makes it near impossible for observers to calculate how much tax they have paid in the UK”

    The only observer which counts is HMRC, not third party Misses Marples who are not entitled to any info apart from that in company accounts as required by UK law .

    If they want to investigate something, they should stick to detailed inspection of their own stools, which I believe is part of Murphy’s daily routine.

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