Australian tax crackdown to target Google, other multinationals
CANBERRA (REUTERS) - Australia released draft revisions to tax laws on Thursday, which it said were designed to stop big firms, including the local arm of Google, from shifting their income to countries such as Holland or Ireland where the tax rates are lower.
The move is in line with a push by Britain and Germany who want the G20 group of nations to make multinational companies pay their "fair share" of taxes, following reports of large firms exploiting loopholes to shift taxation of their income away from where they are generated.
Australia's Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury said the tax laws were being revised to ensure that companies pay tax on profits made in the country, citing the case of Google Australia.
"While the day-to-day dealings of Australian firms advertising on Google might be with Google Australia, under the fine print of contracts Australian firms sign with Google, they are actually buying their advertising from an Irish subsidiary of Google," Mr Bradbury said in a speech to accountants in Sydney.