Escape from taxes

The largest companies in the U.S. are actively using loopholes in the tax laws of the country in order to reduce the payment of taxes. To do this, they transfer huge funds to the accounts of the enterprises in


According to a study conducted by the newspaper Wall Street Journal, 60 of the largest companies in the United States last year brought in 166 billion dollars offshore. This figure means that they hid from U.S. taxes for more than 40% of its annual profit.

Such are the consequences of the tax rules in force in the country. They encourage companies to withdraw money abroad because, by law, the company does not have to pay taxes on the profits they received through the work of the foreign operation, provided that the money is not returned to the United States.

Major U.S. companies register most of their sales abroad in emerging markets. These non-taxable earnings are a subject of debate in the United States. In business circles believe that the tax rate in the U.S. is higher than in many other countries, which puts U.S. companies at a vulnerable position in foreign markets. Other panelists argued that increasing cash flows are the result of clever policy of corporations, through which revenues remain in countries with low taxes.

This discussion is particularly relevant in the face of the monstrous U.S. budget deficit. 10 out of 60 companies surveyed Wall Street Journal, brought in last year to offshore more money than earned. And only 19 of the 60 publicly said what hit him cause transfer of money earned abroad back to the parent company in the United States. According to them, they will have to pay a total of 95 billion dollars in additional taxes.

The Joint Committee on Taxation found that the change in tax law in order to impose taxes on overseas profits will just this year treasury additional 42 billion dollars. According to a study Wall Street Journal, total revenues 60 largest U.S. companies brought their foreign units grew last year by 15% — to $ 1.3 trillion from 1.13 trillion a year earlier.

The tendency to withdraw their money abroad particularly clearly visible against 26 tech and pharmaceutical companies. Together, they took $ 120 billion last year. Some of these companies hold the lion's share of its cash balances of foreign subsidiaries. For example, Johnson &Johnson abroad as of the end of the year held 14.8 billion dollars out of a total of 14.9 billion dollars.

Not everything that is displayed by U.S. companies to offshore, it's cash. The Senate committee last year found that many technology and pharmaceutical companies transferred intellectual property, such as patents, on the balance of its subsidiaries, registered in countries with low tax rates.

The data companies get record sales and profits just in these countries, allowing them to reduce their tax payments to the United States. That is, there is a vicious circle.

Microsoft has increased the amount of money that remain on the balance of its foreign operations, at $ 16 billion last year, bringing it to 60.8 billion dollars. The growth of money in foreign accounts is comparable with the entire net income of the corporation for the year amounted to $ 17 billion. Microsoft notes that the foreign operations brought her 93% of pre-tax profits last year.

The Senate committee in its report said that Microsoft has transferred intellectual property to subsidiaries in Singapore, Ireland and Puerto Rico, to avoid paying the $ 4 billion in taxes in the United States. Licenses and profit sometimes travel to several foreign entities to reduce tax payments.

«Microsoft does all the tax rules in each jurisdiction in which it operates, and annually pay billions of dollars in federal, regional and municipal budgets, the United States, as well as paying taxes abroad", — said the Senate Committee vice-president of Microsoft Tax Bill Semple .

Some companies accumulate in the accounts of foreign operations are truly gigantic amounts. For example, General Electric at the end of last year, held in offshore 108 billion dollars compared to 102 billion dollars a year earlier. GE argues that much of the money invested in the assets, such as the construction and operation of plants and research centers.

In Russia the problem of offshore companies has long been debated. Back in 2011, Vladimir Putin, then Prime Minister, called for deofshorizatsiyu Russian economy. "The conclusion of the national economy, its strategic sectors of the offshore shadows — our top priority for the next period," — he said then.

But while talking about the successes in this direction soon. Evidence of this recent deal on the privatization of JSC "Vanino sea trading port", the owners of which were three Cypriot offshore. "The fact is that as long as there is no injunctive relief, and it is unlikely they can be. But with the idea of having deofshorizatsii this contrasts "- said in late January, the deputy head of the presidential administration, the press secretary of the head of state, Dmitry Peskov. But as PRIME, he noted that the deal "is fully consistent with applicable law" and is "completely legitimate."

"Offshore — a concept quite ambiguous. This, above all, a country with preferential tax treatment. It put such a condition that, if you do not manage activities in the country, then do not pay any taxes. In this case, the register of companies in offshore countries are closed. This is called "classic offshore company", — said the managing partner of Concept consulting Ltd Vladimir Boklykov.

Just as he said, now to this notion began to carry and other countries. For example, Luxembourg, though it is rather high taxation and registers are open. But due to the fact that it provides some benefits, it is also called offshore.

"Offshored exist in the mode of the three tasks. The first — the tax cuts, the second — different scam, fraud, money laundering and violations of the Criminal Code in the field of finance, and the third — just for the safety of the business, "- said in an interview with LOOK Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Reserve Corporation, Alexander Lebedev.


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