Europe, Middle East and Africa Oil and Gas Correspondent
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Oct 15, 2012

How Starbucks avoids UK taxes

LONDON (Reuters) – Starbucks’ coffee menu famously baffles some people. In Britain, it’s their accounts that are confusing. Starbucks has been telling investors the business was profitable, even as it consistently reported losses.

This apparent contradiction arises from tax avoidance, and sheds light on perfectly legal tactics used by multinationals the world over. Starbucks stands out because it has told investors one thing and the taxman another.

Oct 15, 2012

Special Report: How Starbucks avoids UK taxes

LONDON (Reuters) – Starbucks’ coffee menu famously baffles some people. In Britain, it’s their accounts that are confusing. Starbucks has been telling investors the business was profitable, even as it consistently reported losses.

This apparent contradiction arises from tax avoidance, and sheds light on perfectly legal tactics used by multinationals the world over. Starbucks stands out because it has told investors one thing and the taxman another.

Oct 15, 2012

Fast food, tax lite

LONDON (Reuters) – When does a hamburger become intellectual property? For fast food giants, the transformation happens at the tax office.

Restaurant chains such as McDonald’s, Burger King and Subway, and coffee chain Starbucks, save millions in taxes each year by claiming that part of what they’re selling is the parent companies’ know-how.

Oct 4, 2012

Business spooked by UK tax avoidance clampdown

LONDON, Oct 4 (Reuters) – The activists who have protested
in recent months at the tax arrangements of some leading British
companies are united with many politicians in wanting to cut
corporate tax avoidance. On how best to do that, there’s less
agreement.

When the government first came out with plans to clamp down
with a so-called General Anti-Avoidance Rule (GAAR), UK
companies were publicly positive, seeing the measure as helping
tackle public resentment at corporate behavior as well as
creating a more level playing field between companies
themselves.

Sep 18, 2012

Gas output of BP-led Shah Deniz 2 may beat target-Azeri minister

BAKU, Sept 18 (Reuters) – The Shah Deniz offshore gas field
led by BP could end up pumping significantly more gas
than currently planned when a second stage of the project comes
online in 2017, Azerbaijan’s energy minister said on Tuesday.

Shah Deniz 2, as the expansion project is called, is
currently targeting output of 16 billion cubic metres of natural
gas per year, most of which will go to Europe and help reduce
the continent’s reliance on Russian gas.

Jul 12, 2012

Europe profit downturn exposes bullish forecasters

LONDON (Reuters) – Mid-year profit warnings in northern Europe have wrong-footed equity analysts who forecast strong earnings despite a global economic slowdown – the latest embarrassment for a profession whose own value many investors now question.

Thomson Reuters data show average analysts’ forecasts for earnings growth in Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway and Belgium were broadly stable, or even raised, in the first half of the year. <link.reuters.com/wyt39s>

Jun 26, 2012

Insight: Vodafone in new 1-billion-pound UK tax “scandal”

LONDON (Reuters) – The world’s largest mobile phone company, Vodafone Group, has shaved 1 billion pounds, and possibly more, off the taxes its UK operating unit might have paid in the past decade, thanks to accounting factors not seen at other European units.

A Reuters examination of statutory filings made by Vodafone across Europe over the past 16 years shows the UK taxman has often gone empty handed, while tax authorities in Germany, Spain and elsewhere have raked in billions of euros.

Jun 26, 2012

Vodafone in new 1 bln stg UK tax ‘scandal’

LONDON, June 26 (Reuters) – The world’s largest mobile phone
company, Vodafone Group, has shaved 1 billion pounds, and
possibly more, off the taxes its UK operating unit might have
paid in the past decade, thanks to accounting factors not seen
at other European units.

A Reuters examination of statutory filings made by Vodafone
across Europe over the past 16 years shows the UK taxman has
often gone empty handed, while tax authorities in Germany, Spain
and elsewhere have raked in billions of euros.

Jun 13, 2012

UK taxman criticized for Goldman tax deal

LONDON, June 14 (Reuters) – The UK’s public spending
watchdog has criticized the tax authorities for a series of
settlements that may have allowed companies including investment
bank Goldman Sachs and mobile phone operator Vodafone to avoid
paying millions of pounds in taxes.

A National Audit Office (NAO) report released on Thursday
highlighted procedural errors in five large tax settlements,
echoing earlier criticism of the deal from a parliamentary
committee which accused tax authority HMRC of being “too cosy”
with large companies.

Jun 13, 2012

World oil reserves up eight percent, supply fears persist

LONDON (Reuters) – The world’s store of oil and gas jumped 8.3 percent last year, as exploration rose and record crude prices made marginal projects commercially viable, yet supplies will struggle to meet demand due to political factors, oil giant BP (BP.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said on Wednesday.

BP said in its annual calculation of global oil and gas reserves – considered the industry’s most comprehensive – that oil reserves totaled 1,653 billion barrels at the end of 2011.

    • About Tom

      "Tom leads our coverage of the oil and gas industry in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and is also author of 'Spills & Spin: The Inside Story of BP'. A former oil broker who turned to journalism 12 years ago, he is regularly interviewed on CNBC and other TV and radio stations on energy matters. Tom has reported from over twenty countries including Iran, Iraq, India, Pakistan, Tanzania, the U.S. and Russia. As Europe, Middle East and Africa Oil & Gas Correspondent, he has chartered the rise in oil prices to record levels, interviewed oil ministers and the CEOs of ..."
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