BUSINESS TAXES should be replaced by a simpler, single levy on distributed income, according to Accountancy Age readers.
Of the 50 polled, about 80% agreed a single levy should be imposed, with the remaining 20% dissenting.
The taxation of major international corporations has been thrown into sharp focus in recent months after it emerged companies including Starbucks, Amazon and Google had used tax avoidance arrangements to drive down their tax bills.
The trio was called before the public accounts committee, where their representatives were criticised for failing to pay a “just tax” and accused of being “immoral”.
Google’s European base is in Dublin and is administered from Bermuda, while its revenue in the UK was £396m in 2011, with £31m profit and £6m corporation tax paid.
Starbucks’ global CFO Troy Alstead told the committee that in the 15 years the coffee house had been operating in the UK, it had only been profitable in 2006. In that year, it paid £8.6m in corporation tax.
Amazon director of public policy Andrew Cecil was roundly criticised by the committee for his lack of “serious” responses, and was told a more senior executive would be summoned in his stead.
Phillip Gershuny, senior tax partner at Hogan Lovells, outlines how a European exit could affect UK taxes
London accountancy firm Blick Rothenberg warns of potential damages VAT changes could cause UK businesses
Two PwC whistleblowers and journalist to stand trial over alleged leaking of corporate tax documents
Governmental pressure to crack down on tax evasion is resulting in HMRC applying its criminal investigation policy in an inconsistent manner, writes Kingsley Napley's David Sleight