US-linked Cadburys UK Pays No UK Corporation Tax
• Cadburys used to be a British chocolate company. Then it got taken over by US Kraft Foods, later Mondelez. At the time of the take-over the UK government spun all sorts of reassuring stories. It turns out that on 2014 sales of £2 billion the US-linked Cadburys UK paid no corporation tax at all. Perfectly legal under UK law. As Mondelez are quoted as saying “We comply with all applicable tax legislation in the UK, and on a global basis we pay hundreds of millions of dollars in corporate income tax annually.”
• The surprise is not that US-linked companies use UK law to arrange things so that they pay no UK corporation tax. The pity is that successive UK governments seem happy to let them do it. Meanwhile small UK-based business are made to pay higher taxes to fill the gap.
Tax Barrister, Accountant