Last update: Thu, 26 May 2016 01pm

Taxation: World


French police and two dozen computer experts raided Google''''s Paris offices Tuesday in a fraud probe, with the US Internet giant already suspected of owing 1.6 billion euros ($1.7 billion) in back taxes. The French authorities suspect Google of "aggravated tax fraud and conspiracy to conceal (it)," the national financial prosecution service (PNF) said in a statement.
Greece on Sunday was set to adopt fresh cuts and tax hikes ahead of a Eurogroup meeting that is expected to unlock desperately-needed bailout funds for the debt-ridden nation. With more than 8,500 people protesting over a string of unpopular reforms outside the Greek parliament, according to the Greek Police, lawmakers from the ruling leftist party are to approve Sunday night a bill of over 7,000 pages that raises the sales tax cap and introduces a mechanism to slash spending further in case of budget overruns.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to postpone a sales tax hike a second time, judging that boosting the tariff could hurt the world''s third-largest economy, a newspaper said Saturday. Abe has already informed senior government officials he plans delay the consumption tax hike, scheduled for next April, that would raise levy from eight to 10 percent, the Nikkei business daily said.
British Prime Minister David Cameron kicked off a global anti-corruption summit on Thursday with a plan to stop the flow of dirty money into London property, but faces calls to do more to open up Britain''s overseas tax havens. Cameron is pushing for new international commitments on tackling corruption from almost 50 nations and overseas territories attending the summit, including the leaders of Nigeria and Afghanistan, and US Secretary of State John Kerry.
Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said a tax reform bill, considered vital to help the country cope with plunging oil revenues, will be approved by Colombia's congress before the end of 2016 and would not be delayed by the country's peace process. Speaking to investors in London, Santos said he hoped the government would soon conclude lengthy talks with leftist FARC rebels to end Latin America's longest war but said this would not detract from fiscal reform.
The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists on Monday published online detailed data from the Panama Papers trove on more than 200,000 secret offshore companies. The searchable database built on just a portion of the documents leaked from the Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca reveals more than 360,000 names of individuals and companies behind the anonymous shell firms, the ICIJ said.
The Panama Papers revealing offshore secrets of the wealthy is really the result of a behind-the-scenes fight of big global powers, Panama's president said on Monday. "It looks like internal politics and differences between the big powers is playing a role in how these issues are being handled," President Juan Carlos Varela said. "What I don't think is good is that big powers that want to fight are using Panama as a territory for that fight," he said.