Last update: Thu, 28 Jul 2016 11am

Taxation: World


The world''''s major economies need to deepen co-operation on tax collection as companies seek to minimise the amount they pay to governments, finance ministers said Saturday. The issue has become controversial in many countries, with multinational firms from Google to Starbucks facing accusations of not contributing appropriately to the economies where they make their money, and multi-billion-dollar merger proposals being partly driven by tax considerations.
Poland's parliament, led by the conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party, has passed a bill imposing a progressive levy on retailers aimed at bolstering the state budget. The tax, one of PiS's main election promises, will boost the budget by 1.5 billion zlotys ($380 million) annually. It imposes a 0.8 percent levy on monthly revenue between 17 million and 170 million zlotys and 1.4 percent on monthly sales above 170 million.
"Want to win a million baht? Go for e-payment," says Thailand's junta, offering a lucky draw as an incentive to use a new online payment scheme for business, in an effort to bring some of the massive informal economy onto the books and boost tax revenues. As Southeast Asian economies struggle and tax income misses budget targets, Thailand's finance minister is hopeful a nation-wide e-payment scheme will add tax revenue of 100 billion baht ($2.9 billion) a year to the coffers.
India's peaceful tourist hotspot Kerala has become the first state in the country to impose a "fat tax" on junk food in a bid to counter rising obesity. The state's finance minister Thomas Isaac announced a 14.5 percent tax on food including burgers, pizzas and sandwiches sold at restaurants and fast-food chains, as part of the local government's annual budget.
The European Union's top economic official on Tuesday criticised a British proposal to slash corporate tax to less than 15 percent following the nation's vote to quit the bloc. Britain's finance minister George Osborne said at the weekend he would seek to reduce corporation tax to under 15 percent over fears of a corporate exodus following the June 23 referendum to leave the EU.
Venezuela's oil revenues plummeted 40.7 percent in 2015 due to sinking global oil prices, the country's state-owned PDVSA said in its annual report released Sunday. PDVSA - the world's fifth-largest oil company - earned $72.2 billion in revenues last year, a sharp drop from 2014's $121.9 billion. Meanwhile, its net profit fell 19 percent to $7.3 billion.
British finance minister George Osborne plans to slash corporation tax to under 15 percent to tempt businesses to stay following the country's shock vote to leave the European Union, the Financial Times reported Sunday.