Global brand giants in spotlight as tax rorts come under attack

“Governments are in a dilemma: tighten up the laws and risk capital flight." – NBR columnist Neville Bennett

Tax authorities are under pressure to work more closely together to crack down on tax avoidance, focusing on some of the world’s largest brands.

International fast-food chains such as Subway, McDonalds, Starbucks and Burger King avoid tax in the US and also in other jurisdictions, giving them a price advantage over domestic competition.

Authorities in Germany and Britain intend to push the G20 nations into an international agreement to make multinationals pay a “fair” amount of tax.

Google, Amazon, Apple, Cisco, Microsoft, PepsiCo and Pfizer are also in their sights.

In today’s print edition of the National Business Review, columnist Neville Bennett says the developments are worth attention by New Zealand authorities.

“Governments are in a dilemma: tighten up the laws and risk capital flight.

“The plight is real as many countries make tempting offers to attract new business because even if revenue promises turn to custard, which is often the case, capital investment at least increases employment and jobs."

Read more about the challenges of the avoidance scheme and boycott movements in Mr Bennett’s Economically Speaking column.

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