Nations pulling together to fight multinational corporation freeloaders

Last month in Great Britton the collection of the world’s top eight economic nations (the G8) decided to get tough on multinational corporations evading paying taxes.  Last week the top 20 economic nations (the G-20) endorsed the outline of a plan to do the same thing.

The full plan by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (O.E.C.D.) will be presented to the G-20 in St. Petersburg, Russia, in September.  In its preliminary report the O.E.C. D made it quite clear that multinational corporations have been gaming the tax codes of countries (mostly in legal ways) to shift tax burdens to small businesses and individuals.

However, even if the G-20 supports the final report, it will still be up to each individual country to pass the needed legislation to make the plan work.

Two years ago I joined the U.S. Senate’s leading advocate on this issue, Carl Levin, in a D.C. press conference to roll out the Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act.  Unfortunately, that effort was unsuccessful but Senator Levin is our leader and is quoted as saying in recognition of the G8 and G-20 news that there is “growing global demand for reining in corporate offshore tax abuses.”

As Senator Levin approaches his retirement from the Senate, Congress joining the rest of the world’s big economic nations in taking significant steps to make multination corporations pay their global taxes would be a great tribute to his public service.  And I, the South Carolina Small Business Chamber, American Sustainable Business Council and all the other truly small business organizations stand ready to make that recognition a reality.

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