Europe, Middle East and Africa Oil and Gas Correspondent
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Apr 1, 2014

Hutchison wins European court fight against UK tax bill

LONDON, April 1 (Reuters) – Hutchison Whampoa has
won a legal battle that will allow it to offset losses at its UK
mobile phone business against profits from other British
subsidiaries, setting a precedent that could allow other groups
to cut their tax bills.

A European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling on Tuesday held
that British regulations covering “group relief” – the right to
share losses between affiliated companies for tax purposes -
were overly restrictive and broke European Union rules on the
freedom of companies to do business across the bloc.

Mar 7, 2014

UK court ruling may prompt more scrutiny of Amazon tax plans

LONDON (Reuters) – Amazon’s tax affairs could come under more scrutiny in Britain, tax experts said, after a judge questioned whether it really was organized in the tax efficient way it said it was.

The ruling comes as big technology groups, including Amazon, face increasing scrutiny in Britain over their tax practices.

Mar 6, 2014

London’s lucrative Russia ties hang over sanctions debate

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s Office for National Statistics says as many of the country’s residents were born in Mauritius and Cyprus as in Russia.

The fact British newspapers haven’t coined Mauritian or Cypriot equivalents to “Londongrad” and “Moscow-on-the-Thames” to describe the capital underlines the special social and economic impact Russians have had on Britain in the past decade and a half.

Mar 4, 2014

Ukraine queries shale deals as Yanukovich era under scrutiny

KIEV/LONDON (Reuters) – Commercial deals concluded by Ukraine during the presidency of Viktor Yanukovich are already coming under scrutiny, less than two weeks since he was deposed, with lucrative gas projects involving Western companies among the first.

Since Yanukovich fled after three months of street protests that claimed nearly 100 lives, the new authorities in Kiev are looking for any evidence that he arranged deals to benefit people close to him. The acting prosecutor general has said he would review Yanukovich-era contracts for evidence of corrupt practices.

Feb 25, 2014

Foreign companies in Turkey face squeeze

LONDON/VIENNA, Feb 25 (Reuters) – Foreign companies in
Turkey are beginning to feel the effects of a sagging currency,
rising inflation and a growing political power struggle, adding
to fears the country may not be the source of future growth that
some companies had hoped.

As Western companies unveiled their 2013 results in recent
weeks, most of those with operations in Turkey said they were
committed to continuing to invest in the country. However, many
acknowledged bumps in their performance there.

Feb 25, 2014

Foreign investors in Turkey face squeeze

LONDON/VIENNA, Feb 25 (Reuters) – Foreign investors in
Turkey are beginning to feel the effects of a sagging currency,
rising inflation and a growing political power struggle, adding
to fears the country may not be the source of future growth that
some companies had hoped.

Like other developing economies, Turkey has been battered in
recent months by U.S. Federal Reserve plans to reduce its
monetary stimulus. This had allowed financial investors to
borrow cheaply in the United States and invest in high yielding
securities in faster growing, lesser developed economies.

Feb 13, 2014

Google overseas tax bill rises as UK sales hit $5.6 bln

LONDON, Feb 13 (Reuters) – Google said its overseas
tax bill rose sharply in 2013, while sales in Britain, its
biggest foreign market, hit a record $5.64 billion.

Google said in its 10-K annual report filed on Wednesday
that its overseas tax charge, including deferred taxes, was $743
million in 2013.

Feb 7, 2014

Yahoo shifts Europe tax base to Ireland from Switzerland

LONDON/ROME (Reuters) – Yahoo! Inc is shifting its main European tax base to Ireland from Switzerland, a Reuters examination of company statements and accounts shows, as pressure mounts on the Alpine nation to abolish some corporate tax incentives.

The internet search group said the shift reflected a streamlining of its European operations and was not motivated by a desire to cut its tax bill, one of the higher in the U.S. tech sector.

Jan 30, 2014

Britain cuts big companies’ tax bill by 26 pct in 2013

LONDON, Jan 30 (Reuters) – Britain cut the tax bills of many
of its biggest companies by about a quarter last year, a survey
showed on Thursday, as government efforts to cut the nation’s
debt stir controversy over spending cuts and tax breaks.

Corporate taxation has risen to the top of the political
agenda in Britain in the past 18 months, amid revelations that
companies i Apple and Google reap billions in profit thanks to
UK customers but pay little tax in the country.

Dec 20, 2013

Insight: The Great British tax giveaway

LONDON (Reuters) – When Neil Withington, the legal director of British American Tobacco (BAT) and the firm’s largest British shareholder, files his next tax return, he will receive a little help from the state. Like every other UK taxpayer, he will be entitled to a tax credit on any dividend payment he receives. He can use it to reduce his total bill.

The credit is intended to compensate shareholders for the fact that dividends are paid out of income which has already been subject to UK corporate income tax. To help avoid the same money being taxed twice, the UK trims its levy on dividends.

    • 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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