Facebook not cheating on tax - expert
Fri, 30 Nov 2012 9:47a.m.
Facebook and Google aren't cheating the system by paying tiny tax bills, an international tax expert says.
Labour is blaming the government for allowing the companies to "get away with it" after producing figures showing Facebook's New Zealand arm paid $14,500 tax on revenue of $427,967 last year and Google $109,038 on revenue of $4.4 million.
The party's revenue spokesman, David Clark, says Revenue Minister Peter Dunne is refusing to close loopholes but international tax expert Maurits van den Berg says it's not that simple.
"The future has arrived, we're dealing with intellectual property and it's very mobile," he said on Friday.
"These big multinational intellectual property companies quite likely have minimal or no actual presence in New Zealand - it makes them quite hard to tax."
Mr van den Berg says Facebook and Google aren't guilty of tax evasion, or even tax avoidance.
The problem is that international tax treaties are built around "bricks and mortar" companies which have property and employees in different countries, he said on Radio New Zealand.
"It's easy to tax a multinational company that has a warehouse in New Zealand and employs sales staff but these intellectual property companies are a real challenge for governments."
Mr van den Berg agrees with Mr Dunne, who says New Zealand has to operate under its international tax agreements.
"Intellectual property needs to be sorted out at an international level, and it's going to take years," Mr van den Berg said.
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16/12/2012 9:26:04 a.m.
Leftist lying loons make up garbage and then claim reality is wrong.Here they clearly state revenue=profit and claim it must be evasion for business not to have paid tax on revenue. Anyone who can read, can see this clearly, hence the leftists can't see it.Like the $21 tax evasion claim, they only misplaced the decimal point 3 places if they used a profit figure, or they used a revenue figure. Yet goverment spending accounts for around 1/2 the worlds GDP, what with all its welfare, all its health/education/public servants/ transportation/ military/ everything!
11/12/2012 11:08:48 a.m.
Funny how none of the laws of the land seem to apply to the big wealthy fat cats of the world.How many misguided fools there are, who get on their soap-box and plead their case....they're too big to fail and way to big to bother with the taxation system...now lets see what happens if we apply your moaning about nothing paradigm to ALL NZ's tax payers??? These guys make millions off the advertising that pays their bills,don't try and scare the users it might cost them money. If anything online users would just vote with their mouses and go elsewhere like they did with MySpace before FB was around. If they don't want to play ball and pay fair tax rates, let the competition come in and replace them. Isn't that how the market forces are supposed to work Jim? What you're saying is the tail should wag the dog and kiwis should be happy to be ripped off by big corporations? People moan and get pissed off when they are being taken for a ride. Telling them they should shut up about it, is simplistic and kinda brainless when you sit down and THINK about the issue Jim...telling people to just put up with scams is in itself a non argument....making life more difficult?....please!!...
2/12/2012 1:55:50 p.m.
@Jim what utter rubbish.
You excuse business no matter what it does.
2/12/2012 7:58:37 a.m.
Jim Seaview wrote:
Labour moaning again about nothing. Google and Facebook are used by thousands of New Zealanders every day at no cost to the user and Labour wants to tax both these organisations more to make life more difficult for everyone.
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