The month of May should see a significant boost for Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs, with news Amazon is now paying its sales taxes directly into the UK’s coffers.
The company had been funneling all of its sales through its European tax haven Luxembourg, but as of May 1st the firm is paying their way in the UK, Spain, Italy and Germany, according to a Wall Street Journal report.
With the European Commission looking to take Amazon, Google and retailers like Starbucks to task over its practices, Amazon appears to have preemptively changed tact.
The change comes following the imposition of a new punitive ‘Google Tax’ by Chancellor George Osborne, which came into effect in April. The punitive measure charges a 25 per cent sales levy on companies like Amazon, it deems were bending the rules by sending earnings elsewhere.
The move is sure to cost Amazon a fortune in revenue, but it may encourage other tech giants on Europe’s hit list, like Apple which funnels its earnings through Ireland, to follow suit.
An Amazon spokesperson told The Journal: “We regularly review our business structure to ensure that we are able to best serve our customers and provide additional product and services.”
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The company refused to say whether the changes were due to the Google Tax or the threat of sanctions from the European Commission. Confirmation in the structure change comes after The Guardian reported it was taking place last week.