Boris Johnson Defends Google over its Tax Row

London Mayor Boris Johnson has made a surprise move of defending technology giants like Google and Apple over their ‘tiny’ tax bill as he laid the blame with his own party’s government. According to Mr. Johnson, it was “absurd” to blame the search engine giant over its £130million settlement because “you might as well blame a shark for eating seals.” Therefore, he criticised his own government and stressed that “the fault in the whole affair” lies in Britain’s own system.

Whereas on the other hand, George Osborne has also drawn sheer criticism for his remarks that Google could pay the sum to cover 10 years’ of back taxes even though its UK sales were £3.6billion in 2013 alone. Labour party is now planning to try and drag the Chancellor to Parliament “kicking and screaming” to explain how bosses at HMRC arrived at the sum.

According to Mr. Johnson, neither Google nor tech giant Apple should shoulder any blame for their low tax bills. He stated that “there is a part of me that sides strongly with Tim Cook and Apple, or at least can see his point of view.” Furthermore, Mr Johnson elucidated that legal tax avoidance is “the nature of the beast; and not only is it the nature of the beast – it is the law,” adding that “it is the fiduciary duty of their finance directors to minimise tax exposure. They have a legal obligation to their shareholders.” Moreover, he alleged that “tax is not paid on the basis of what ‘feels right’ either to public opinion or to politicians.”

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