Articles on Tax avoidance

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The Netherlands is where nearly $1 billion from Australia was sunk into two companies liquidated three years later. Alex de Haas/flickr

Bottom of the canal: Pfizer’s billion-dollar tax ploy

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has engaged in a series of paper transactions to create a A$936 million loss in Australia – effectively a billion-dollar exercise in avoiding tax.
Anyone can use a discretionary trust but the beneficiaries of trusts are usually all part of the one family or extended family. Joel Carrett/AAP

Family trusts often cause more harm than good

Overwhelmingly, trusts are used to minimise tax, avoid paying creditors and to avoid the fair division of property after a relationship breakdown.
Despite global outrage at the cost of its Hepatitis C cure, Gilead reaps huge profits – aided by Australian taxpayer subsidies. Nick St Charles/flickr

Gilead and the billion-dollar odyssey

How much can a multinational take before its social licence to operate in this country expires? How much corporate welfare is too much?
The Senate Inquiry into Corporate Tax Avoidance has helped expose just how much work remains to be done on the multinational tax front. Julian Smith/AAP

Rumours of the death of multinational tax avoidance are greatly exaggerated

The Australian government took out ads this month boasting of victory in the fight against multinational tax avoidance. It is no small irony that taxpayers forked out for this bald-faced lie.
Wotif is one of a slew of formerly competitive rivals bought up by Expedia. Dan Peled/AAP

Tax take shrinks as online accommodation agents rake it in

Australian authorities have allowed predatory online travel agents to shrink their tax base while penalising Australian accommodation operators thanks to onerous commissions and vanishing competition
If Australia adopted a similar approach to the Hong Kong to eliminate debt loading abuse, United States oil and gas giant Chevron would have been denied A$6.275 billion in interest deductions. Ray Strange/AAP

Chevron is just the start: modelling shows how many billions in revenue the government is missing out on

New modelling shows governments need to ensure that corporations benefiting from the use of Australia's resources, are contributing the same as they do in other jurisdictions.
The amount of tax payable from Australian corporations went down in this latest report. www.shutterstock.com

The tax office’s transparency reporting is looking a little opaque

As long as the ATO doesn't question why companies are reporting zero tax payable on their income, the public won't know if serious tax avoidance is happening.

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