According to investigators at Cictar, Microsoft has evaded billions in taxes in the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. In the same countries, the tech giant makes big money on government contracts.
The allegations were detailed in a recent investigative report by the Center for Corporate Tax Accountability and Research (Cictar). According to the organization, Microsoft has deprived the residents of several countries of much-needed money. In the report, Cictar describes how Microsoft evades billions in taxes by shifting its revenues to subsidiaries in Bermuda and other tax havens.
Zero tax on billions of profits
According to the analysis, Microsoft Global Finance — an Irish subsidiary with tax status in Bermuda — raised more than $ 100 billion in investments and did not pay a penny in taxes in 2020, despite receiving $ 2.4 billion in operating profit.
In the same year, Microsoft Singapore Holdings reported more than $ 22 billion in dividend income and only $ 15 in tax liabilities.
According to Cictar analyst Jason Ward, Microsoft claims its shareholders ‘ profit margins are more than 30 percent, while financial reports in the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand indicate returns of 3 to 4 percent.
The analysis shows that Microsoft has received government contracts worth at least $ 3.3 billion in the United Kingdom, United States, Australia and Canada over the past five years. Cictar noted that Microsoft is under investigation by tax authorities in multiple countries, including the United States and Australia.
In a 2021 Annual Report, Microsoft confessed that in 2021 and 2020 it used subsidiaries in Ireland and Puerto Rico to process up to 86 percent of all international revenue. By funneling the revenue to the subsidiaries, the tech giant paid much less tax than in the countries where it operates.