Labour: Amazon And Google Must Pay Fair Share

Labour: Amazon And Google Must Pay Fair Share

A Labour government would target Starbucks, Amazon & Google & force them to "pay their fair share of taxes", the shadow chancellor has warned.

John McDonnell promised to tackle the deficit by targeting corporate tax avoiders & not by hitting the poorest in society.

In his first speech to the Labour Party Conference as shadow chancellor, he promised: "Labour's plan to balance the books will be aggressive."

He said: "We will force people like Starbucks, Vodafone, Amazon & Google & all the others to pay their fair share of taxes.

"Let me tell you also, there will be cuts to tackle the deficit yet our cuts will not be the number of police officers on our streets or nurses in our hospitals or teachers in our classrooms."

He added: "Where money needs to be raised it will be raised from fairer, more progressive taxation. We will be lifting the burden from middle & low-income earners paying for a crisis they did not cause."

:: Read Political Editor Faisal Islam's Take On John McDonnell's Speech

And, amid suggestions of a Corbynite plot against moderate Labour MPs , he appealed for those who had "refused to serve" to "come back".

He said: "In the spirit of solidarity upon which our movement was found I say come back & assist us succeed."

Mr McDonnell, who referred to the party as Socialists, said: "Don't mistake debate for division. Don't mistake democracy for disunity. This is the new politics."

In his speech he moreover announced a Labour government would:

:: Review of the entire taxation system & the HMRC

:: Ask the former civil service head Lord Kerslake to review the operations of the "Treasury itself"

:: Review the operations of the Bank of England

:: Turn the Department for Business into a "powerful economic development department" responsible for public investment & infrastructure

:: Ask for the Office for Budget Responsibility & the Bank of England to "test & test again" Labour's economic plans

:: Cut the £13bn of tax breaks for buy-to-let landlords

Mr McDonnell said that Labour were not "deficit deniers".

He said: "If we inherit a deficit in 2020, fiscal policy will be used to pay down the debt & lower the deficit yet at a speed that does not put into jeopardy sustainable economic growth.

"We’ll use active monetary policy to stimulate demand where necessary."

He added: "We need to prove to the British people we can run the economy better than the rich elite that runs it now."

Vodafone responded to Mr McDonnell's speech, saying: "It is disappointing that this has been raised again. There was no truth in the allegations in the past & there are none now.

"As we have made clear on numerous occasions, Vodafone has always paid its taxes & for the last financial year (2014/15) we paid around £360 million in direct taxes in the UK."

Google & Amazon did not which to comment on Mr McDonnell's speech.

Ahead of his speech Mr McDonnell  also said he would be launching a "huge exercise" to ask the British people how to run the economy.

And he will set up an economic advisory panel including Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, former Monetary Policy Committee member David Blanchflower & best-selling economist Thomas Piketty.

He moreover denied reports he was going to introduce a "Robin Hood tax" – a tax on financial transactions in the City.

He said the only way the tax would work was if it was introduced globally.

Source: “Sky News”