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Politicians urged to act over firms' low tax bills

By Damian Clarkson

Published 21/10/2015

Taxi service: the Uber app
Taxi service: the Uber app

Uber is the latest company to risk public anger after paying just £22,134 corporation tax in the UK last year, despite making a £866,302 profit here.

A spokesman for the taxi-hailing service denied it had used any loopholes, and insisted it had paid "every penny of tax that is due".

He added: "With corporation tax, past losses offset current and future profits - as is the case with Uber which made losses in the UK in previous years. This is an accounting principle to encourage investment that dates back to Benjamin Disraeli. It is not a loophole."

It comes one week after Facebook revealed it paid just £4,327 corporation tax in the UK in 2014. A string of multinational firms have been criticised in recent months for taking steps to legally avoid corporation tax. TaxPayers' Alliance chief executive Jonathan Isaby said such cases would keep arising: "We will keep reading about big companies like Uber paying a pittance in tax until politicians get a grip on our maddeningly complex tax code.

"The system for taxing companies was designed decades ago and is now totally unsuitable for the modern, digital economy. It is time for politicians to stop their pointless moralising and fundamentally reform the tax code."

Uber, meanwhile, is set to launch a service for disabled passengers in London.

The minicab-hailing app said more than 100 of its most experienced drivers have signed up to the uberAssist scheme.

Those needing it can request the service by typing ASSISTUK into the promotion screen on Uber's app.

Belfast Telegraph

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