Amazon back in firing line over £2.4m 2012 tax bill

ONLINE RETAILER AMAZON could again face criticism over its UK tax bill after its accounts showed it paid just £2.4m in corporation tax last year.

The details came as it was also revealed that it received £2.5m in government grants.

The company made £4.2bn in sales in the UK, channelling them through a Luxembourg affiliate – Amazon EU Sarl – driving down its bill.

Its UK arm is classed as a service provider to Amazon EU Sarl, with the Luxembourg-based company funding the UK business through fees covering its operating costs, leaving little room for profits.

Amazon, along with Starbucks and Google, were heavily criticised last year for their low tax bills. Google are due to appear before the Public Accounts Committee today after it emerged their London offices employ sales staff, despite vice president for Northern Europe Matt Brittin previously telling MPs no sales activity occurred in the UK.

Amazon said in a statement: “Amazon pays all applicable taxes in every jurisdiction that it operates within. Like many companies, Amazon has received assistance in relation to major investments in the UK”.

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