Bill English. Photo Getty
Finance Minister Bill English says he wants Google, Apple
and Starbucks and other multinationals to pay more tax and
hopes the issue will be raised at economic talks this week.
Mr English is among 2500 political, business and academic
leaders attending the World Economic Forum's annual meeting
in Davos, Switzerland.
The minister said this morning that getting corporates to pay
their fair share of tax required international collaboration.
"We're very keen to see them pay more tax. The tricky bit is
that it requires combined international action," he told
Radio New Zealand's Morning Report.
"A whole range of countries are going to need to agree on tax
rules for companies like Google and Apple and Starbucks and
any number of corporates that you can think of.
"I would certainly hope that's going to be discussed at this
forum because it's going to need a lot of people including
businesses to see that it's unacceptable."
He said the small amount of tax paid by large companies was
particularly unpalatable to taxpayers who had "shelled out
billions of dollars" to underwrite some of the large
corporations during the recession.
Although Google and other companies had local offices in New
Zealand, their tax bills were believed to be out of
proportion with their reported sales in this country.
The Labour Party said last week that "aggressive tax
avoidance" by digital giants, including Facebook, was costing
the taxman millions of dollars each year.
- Isaac Davison of the New Zealand Herald