Category: Britain

Belize offshore secrecy ill at ease with UK politics and US authorities

How US tax inspectors fear firms and individuals are using Lord Ashcroft’s bank to hide assets and evade tax It was a stern message David Cameron took with him on his visit to the Caribbean last September: “If we’re to beat corruption, we need transparency.” And some in the region… – Continue reading

UK PM signals tax haven clampdown

Just as the Cayman Islands government was feeling confident that its relationship with the British government was better than ever and the UK was beginning to understand and accept the role of the offshore financial sector, the new prime minister, Theresa May, is believed to have ordered a clampdown on… – Continue reading

Swiss get ‘largely compliant’ rating for tax assistance – finance ministry

Neutral Switzerland has got an overall rating of “largely compliant” in an international review of how well it shares information with other countries on tax matters, the finance ministry said on Tuesday. Swiss officials hailed the outcome as crucial recognition of their efforts to shed the country’s reputation as a… – Continue reading

Becoming a Tax Haven Is Harder Than It Looks

Slashing rates probably won’t be the U.K.’s magic bullet. As Britain plans its way out of the European Union, politicians have been looking for ways for the country to maintain its dominance as a center for global capital. One idea: turning the post-Brexit U.K. into a tax haven. In the… – Continue reading

Tax avoidance: how it works and how to stop it

The Panama Papers have put the spotlight on tax avoidance once again. This is, of course, not a new issue. Before that, we had Swiss Leaks and BVI Leaks. You may be asking: how does tax avoidance work and why have policymakers struggled to rein it in? Firstly, it is… – Continue reading

After Brexit, EU proposes tougher tax rules on trusts

The European Commission will propose on Tuesday stricter rules on trusts to prevent tax evasion, according to draft legislation seen by Reuters, in a move that Britain has long opposed and which was deferred until after the Brexit referendum. The EU push to identify owners of trusts has been in… – Continue reading

Tax haven route won’t work for post-Brexit UK, OECD says

The United Kingdom is unlikely to try to lure international investment by becoming a tax haven after it leaves the European Union, according to an internal memo prepared by the body responsible for the drafting international tax rules. The head of tax at the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development,… – Continue reading

Post-Brexit Britain WILL secure strong trade deal with EU, insists leading economist

BRITAIN will thrive outside the European Union by using its influence to secure a strong trade deal, according to a senior economist. Dr Michael Ivanovitch said the Government has “huge leverage” in its trade negotiations after it triggers Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and leaves the union. He insisted… – Continue reading

What Brexit is Likely to Mean for Taxes, Trade and More

Regardless of whether you were surprised, overjoyed, dismayed or showed any other emotion (perhaps anger as you saw world markets tank), Brexit is here. Yes, we’re talking about the British exit from the European Union. We are not sure why the media coined the term “Brexit,” when it’s not only… – Continue reading

UK Must Comply With EU Privacy Law, Watchdog Argues

But Brexit May Upend Data Protection and Notification Rules Lawmakers and legal analysts are still struggling to analyze the impact of the June 23 referendum on Britain’s membership in the European Union (see Brexit: What’s Next for Privacy, Policing, Surveillance?). In the wake of a majority of U.K. voters opting… – Continue reading

Brexit Risks Losing Corporate Tax Break Worth Billions in U.K.

British multinational companies face new withholding taxes that may cost hundreds of billions of euros a year if U.K. voters decide to leave the European Union, international tax specialists say. A so-called Brexit “would have a major impact” on British corporations that have subsidiaries in the EU, said Daniel Gutmann,… – Continue reading

Implications of a Brexit: A U-turn in tackling global tax avoidance?

With just days remaining until Britain decides on its EU membership, the UK is at a crossroads. It has a historical choice to make, with various consequences attached to the decision on the 23rd of June on whether it becomes the first ever country to leave the EU. Those consequences… – Continue reading

India, Slovenia ink double-tax avoidance treaty amendments

In its fight against black money stashed abroad, India has signed a protocol with European Union member nation Slovenia to make changes to the Double Taxation Avoidance Convention between the two countries, an official statement said in New Delhi on Thursday. The protocol, for avoidance of double taxation and preventing… – Continue reading

Exclusive: EU aims to rule on Amazon’s Luxembourg tax deal by July – sources

BRUSSELS – EU state aid regulators aim to rule on Amazon’s (AMZN.O) tax deal with Luxembourg by July, two people familiar with the matter said on Thursday, and it may order the country’s tax authorities to recover about 400 million euros ($448 million) in back taxes. The European Commission’s decision… – Continue reading

EU Lays Down the Law on Tax Deals as Apple Probe Continues

The European Union, locked in a tax battle with the likes of Apple Inc. and McDonald’s Corp., laid down the law in its bid to rein in governments that woo multinationals with special fiscal deals allowing them to reduce their fiscal liability by booking profits abroad. The European Commission, which… – Continue reading

Tax havens accuse US of ‘hypocrisy’ over tax avoidance

A group of tax havens have accused larger countries like the United States of “hypocrisy” when it comes to cracking down on tax avoidance. With the issue of offshore finance high on the agenda in light of the fall out from the so-called Panama Papers scandal, world leaders convened in… – Continue reading

Canada’s record on finding tax evaders is dismal

Only a week after the so-called Panama Papers burst into the media spotlight early last month, the Canadian government issued a news release vowing to “crack down on tax evasion and tax avoidance.” The leak of a staggering 11.5 million documents from a Panama City law firm promised to reveal… – Continue reading

UN urges countries to stem tide of firms profit-shifting to tax havens

Unctad thinktank shows firms funnelled $221bn in 2015 through low-tax jurisdictions such as the Netherlands and tax havens in the Caribbean The UN has urged governments to stem the flow of funds to tax havens after companies funnelled $221bn (£152bn) into countries with low tax rates last year. The Netherlands… – Continue reading

Banks to help create a national register of offshore firm owners

Greek banks and the state are in the process of creating a national register for offshore company owners, in compliance with a European Union directive to that effect. The register will be created on the Teiresias databank, known from its list of insolvent borrowers. Access will be granted to the… – Continue reading

Once A Tax Haven, Gibraltar Now Says It’s Low-Tax

Gibraltar, a tiny British territory at Europe’s southern tip, is famous for its geography — a huge limestone rock — that appears on the Prudential logo. It’s a global center for offshore banking, with the trappings of wealth to prove it: Luxury high-rises tower over super yachts in Gibraltar’s marina. The… – Continue reading

The Panama Papers And FATCA – Another Cover Up?

Tax avoidance on a grand scale is nothing new – the US President Barak Obama has led the way in tackling the issue head on with the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) since 2010. FATCA demands non-American financial institutions should hand over details about accounts and investments controlled by… – Continue reading

Income tax cuts will benefit 31 million workers

The amount people can earn before being hit by income tax will rise to £11,500 in April 2017, benefiting millions of workers. The move will cut taxes for 31 million people, according to the Treasury, and will mean 1.3 million low-wage workers are taken out of paying income tax altogether…. – Continue reading

UK Slammed Over Tax Haven Inaction as Report Shows Rich Getting Richer

The UK has been slammed over its failure to crackdown on British-controlled tax havens, with a new report claiming that the wealthiest one percent of the UK’s population have captured more than US$1.4 trillion of the country’s national growth since 2000. The report from Oxfam called on UK officials to… – Continue reading

The rich people who pay no tax

Only the little people pay taxes. For a small, select cohort of rich Australians, the famous quote of New York property billionaire Leona Helmsley rings not as an outrage but as an inspiration. In the most recent documents released by the Australian Tax Office, there were 55 people who had… – Continue reading

London court slams UBS offshore tax schemes

Offshore schemes operated by Swiss bank UBS and Germany’s Deutsche Bank in a bid to avoid paying income tax on bankers’ bonuses are not exempt from tax, the Supreme Court in London ruled Wednesday. British tax authorities, who brought the court action, said the schemes set up by the Swiss… – Continue reading

Google And The UK Tax System – Tax Avoidance?

For several years now Google has been facing what appears to be a case of tax avoidance in the UK, at some point in time, the company went as far saying it did not make any money from business in the UK all in a desperate attempt to pay less… – Continue reading

France seeking €1.6 billion in Google back taxes

France is seeking €1.6 billion in back taxes from Google, criticised for its use of aggressive tax optimisation techniques, a source at the finance ministry has said. “As far as our country is concerned, back taxes concerning this company amount to €1.6bn,” the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity,… – Continue reading

Who’s got guts enough to go after Canada’s tax-dodging corporations?

In its time, the Irving empire has had plenty of federal contracts — all of them lucrative, many of them controversial. So it wasn’t a surprise to hear that a federal cabinet committee is reviewing Irving’s $26 billion sole-source (but still unsigned) contract to build a fleet of warships for… – Continue reading

Scotland advertised across Eastern Europe as tax haven

SCOTLAND is being advertised as a tax haven across Eastern Europe. The country’s allegedly lax company formation laws are being promoted by firms in Latvia, Russia, Ukraine and Belarus as authorities black list more traditional “fiscal paradises”. A new round of publicity for Scotland as an “offshore zone” began this… – Continue reading

Beazley moves its tax base back to Britain from Ireland

Insurance firm has been domiciled in Ireland since 2009 The insurance group Beazley has said it will move its headquarters back to London more than six years after shifting to Dublin for tax reasons. The FTSE 250 firm will ask shareholders to vote on the move back to the UK… – Continue reading

10 biggest multinational offenders evading taxes in the UK

The brands are known worldwide, and even though global companies like Google, Amazon, and Starbucks make billions — they pay little or no taxes at all in the UK and other markets where the firms make a majority of revenue and profits. Companies like Microsoft, Twitter, and Apple don’t set… – Continue reading

Brussels’ Corporate Tax Plan Falls Short of Reforms Needed

European Commission’s tax avoidance plan announced last week includes positives, like country-by-country reporting, but doesn’t go far enough to turn the tide against corporate tax dodging; Such reporting should be made public The European Commission last week announced proposals for new laws to tackle tax avoidance and evasion in the… – Continue reading

Tax Injustice Is Systemic

COMMUNIST trade union leader Ken Gill famously referred to taxation as “the price we pay for civilisation.” If so last week gave further evidence of just how uncivilised a country Britain has become after decades of neoliberalism. Google’s deal with HMRC has rightly prompted outrage and consternation at the sheer… – Continue reading

Barney Jones: Meet the whistleblower who helped expose Google’s tax avoidance

The whistleblower who helped to reveal how Google was avoiding paying tax in the UK said that Britain needed to create better incentives to encourage more people to come forward and reveal how multinationals are avoiding paying tax to the exchequer. Like millions of others this weekend, Barney Jones is… – Continue reading

Google expected to reveal growth of offshore cash funds to $43bn

Tech company’s 2015 earnings will be announced next week as governments aim to crack down on Google’s controversial tax avoidance arrangements Google is poised to confirm next week that controversial tax structures in Ireland, the Netherlands and Bermuda have boosted its offshore cash mountain to more than $43bn (£30bn), figures… – Continue reading

Anguilla Best Flat Tax Country for a Low Tax Lifestyle

Anguilla levies a 3% flat rate of personal income tax and is otherwise a tax haven with a stunning climate and amazing Carribean lifestyle Whilst there are various categories of flat tax, including marginal flat tax and Hall-Rabushka flat tax, in its simplest form flat tax is simply a rate… – Continue reading

Anguilla Best Flat Tax Country for a Low Tax Lifestyle

Whilst there are various categories of flat tax, including marginal flat tax and Hall-Rabushka flat tax, in its simplest form flat tax is simply a rate of tax that remains consistent with a constant marginal rate. What this means is, as an income tax payer in a country with such… – Continue reading

Extreme Global Inequality Is Out of Control – Something Must Be Done

Coinciding with the World Economic Forum in Davos this week Oxfam has issued a report – entitled An Economy for the 1% – outlining how wealth inequality has grown to the stage where 62 of the world’s richest people own as much as the poorest half of the world’s people… – Continue reading

UK expats face ‘double whammy’ over tax affairs

The government is ready to restrict British expatriates’ tax benefits in a bid to get agreement with the European Union over renegotiating the UK’s terms of membership, according to press reports. The Guardian has reported that expats could be banned from claiming tax credits for up to four years as… – Continue reading

Investor group buys Barclays’ offshore trust business

Barclays (BARC.L) has sold its offshore trust business to an independent investor group but will keep a 20 percent stake in the new company, renamed as ZEDRA, for at least three years. The sale marks another step in the British bank’s efforts to simplify its wealth and investment management activities…. – Continue reading