Labour leader Ed Miliband will write new rules to tackle corporate tax dodgers if he wins the next election, even if there is no international consensus for action.
But Mr Miliband told the Observer that if no deal is done a future Labour administration would act unilaterally to make global firms operating in the UK be more transparent about their tax structures.
The move comes just days after internet giant Google was given a mauling by MPs on the Public Accounts Committee over its tax affairs.
At a stormy session MPs reacted with incredulity to claims that the company - which paid just £6 million in corporation tax in 2011 - did not carry out advertising sales in the UK, despite generating more than £3 billion a year in revenues.
Mr Miliband, who will speak at a Google event in Hertfordshire on Wednesday, said he believed some multinationals were not living up to their responsibilities to society.
He said: "Now, what is the politicians' responsibility: change the law. But it is also to talk about the kind of society we want to create and what the responsibilities of a company like Google are.
"I don't think they are living up to their responsibilities at the moment, and I will be very clear about that on Wednesday.
"It is part of a culture of irresponsibility. If everyone approaches their tax affairs as some of these companies have approached their tax affairs we wouldn't have a health service, we wouldn't have an education system. And actually the point I will make at Google is that will undermine Google."
The Labour leader said the Government was "dragging its feet" on the issue of tax avoidance: "They have got to act. If they don't act, we will act in government. This is an absolutely massive and serious issue."