The internet giant Amazon paid almost no tax on its profits over the last years. How can it be that medium and small sized companies pay sky high taxes, whereby large corporations move all their profits to some offshore tax havens in order to avoid tax.
How can those corporations choose how much tax they pay, were normal people and SME’s have no way to avoiding the taxman?
The concept is very simple. Amazon books profits in low tax jurisdictions and losses are booked in high tax countries. Large corporation typically sell trademarks e.g.: Amazon.com, eBay, Google etc. to an offshore company, they actually control via a trust.
Amazon.com or other corporations will than need to pay a license fee to that offshore company for using that trademark.
It’s all 100% legal. It is very difficult to close those kind of tax loopholes as it would have devastating impact on cross border trading of intellectual properties or services. One option would be to create an ‘Import duty” on non tangible goods or services, which is virtually impossible.
Amazon is not an evil company; they just want to make as much money as possible, like everybody else. I believe companies who choose to pay almost zero tax should at least donate some money or do something like Bill Gates does with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Corporations like Amazon have become to globalized and international for local governments to control them. Amazon has warehouses and operations around the world.