Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Links - Feb 10

** Also see our searchable archive of past story summaries; and Offshore Watch. **

Treasury defends appointment of executive with links to tax-haven
Feb 10 (Herald) - The Treasury yesterday defended appointing a former trustee of a bank in one of the world's most secretive tax havens to oversee the taxpayer's multi-billion stake in bailed-out banks. See what Richard Murphy had to say about it, here.

Why Malaysia is seen as a tax haven
Feb 10 (Malaysia Kini) – Or why Malaysia might be the next rising tax haven in Asia.

Recession worst for 100 years, says Balls
Feb 10 (FT) - Britain is facing the “most serious global recession for over 100 years”, Ed Balls, Gordon Brown’s closest ally, has warned in an admission that the financial crisis could be worse than the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The Isle of Man - still subsidised by the UK to be a tax haven
Feb 10 (Tax Research) - I last reviewed the Isle of Man’s subsidy from the UK as a tax haven in tax year 2004/05. Then I estimated it to be as high as £270 million a year. The VAT subsidy alone was some £233 million a year.

Swiss bank secrecy will disappear quickly
Le secret bancaire suisse va rapidement disparaître"
Feb 9 (Le Tribune) - An interview with Former Geneva Betrand Bertossa, who believes that outside pressure will put an end to Swiss bank secrecy, and soon. All the tools are available to Europe to act; what’s missing is political will. Praises Obama’s Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act, and criticism for “the lack of co-operation of British justice – “a great duplicity between what it says and what it does.” In French, Rough web translation here.

Low-tax, low-cost flight to Dublin
Feb 10 (Guardian) - The latest ploy by big businesses anxious to avoid UK tax, is to claim that they have changed residence to low-tax Ireland. But when the Guardian went in search of new company headquarters on the Liffey, we found there sometimes seemed to be a touch of blarney involved in the claims.

Tracking down the addresses of the Irish headquarters
Feb 10 (Guardian) - The Tax gap reporting team goes in search of those elusive relocated headquarters

Court rulings and lobbying help big firms pay less tax
Feb 10 (Guardian) - The threat to relocate to Dublin is only one of the weapons used by big business in their campaigns to pay less tax. Legal challenges are potent too.


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