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Multi-national tax issue continues

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 18/03/2017

Kiwi taxpayers have every reason to feel outraged that electronics company Apple has paid no New Zealand tax over ten years on sales of $4.2 billion, says Labour's Revenue spokesman Michael Wood.

Its New Zealand branch paid $37 million in tax since 2007 but all of it was passed on to the Australian government because the New Zealand operation is run out of Australia, the Weekend Herald reports.

Mr Wood says nurses, cleaners, office workers, and small business owners who pay their fair share of tax to support public services will be dismayed.

"Cabinet was officially warned about the huge scale of multi-national tax avoidance five years ago, yet as late as last year the revenue minister was saying there was no problem and he'd seen no evidence to suggest New Zealand was missing out. It's obvious that we are," Mr Wood says.

In March current Revenue Minister Judith Collins announced a crackdown on multi-nationals.

On Saturday she tweeted "I'm not able 2 access individual taxpayers' tax details from IRD. Always happy 2 discuss our excellent plans 4 NZ 2 get our fair share".

Company tax makes up 15 per cent of New Zealand's total tax take, but a Cabinet paper released in December said there were concerns multinationals were not paying their fair share.

Apple says it pays the majority of its tax in the US.

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