In the light of recent deep spending cuts by the current UK coalition government, which are estimated to result in the loss of about 500,000 jobs around the UK, it is both unfair and unjust that Vodafone, through the use of a Luxembourg loan-subsidiary tax avoidance company as a routing location for their acquisition of Mannesmann and subsequent profit "stashing", has avoided billions of pounds (estimated £4.3Bn to 2010 with further revelations this week) in taxes to the UK coffers.
In 2011 it looks like their £3.5Bn in profits will see them paying just ***£1400*** in tax (http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/markets/article-2049496/Vodafone-pays-just-1-400-tax-profits-3-5bn.html).
While hard working families struggle to make ends meet and services are cut, big business like Vodafone continues to enjoy preferential treatment from the government.
All this could potentially be seen as rather "cosy" in light of the knowledge that Andy Halford, Vodafone's financial director, has been advising chancellor George Osborne on tax matters. Osborne let the long-disputed original tax bill finally drop shortly before a trip to India to argue to Vodafone's business interests out there.
After years of wrangling, the UK govt caved in last year and received just £1.25Bn of an estimated overall £6Bn bill: the avoidance continues a year on.
What hope can there be for fairness when governments let huge companies avoid taxation while persecuting individual UK taxpayers following HMRCs PAYE incompetence, and subservience to Big Business interests?
PAYE employees cannot "negotiate" their tax rate. Companies should be no different.