Uber, the smartphone taxi app, has been referred to HM Revenue & Customers by London’s taxi and minicab regulator Transport for London (TfL).
The referral follows a complaint by Labour MP Margaret Hodge that Uber’s Dutch operating firm Uber BV does not pay tax in the UK and was “opting out of the UK tax regime”.
The move flies in the face of comments by Uber founder Travis Kalanick who, speaking at the Institute of Director’s annual convention earlier this month, said: “Remember every trip is done by an operator who is essentially a small business operating in the city… 100 per cent of that fare is taxed.”
An Uber spokesman said the company complied with all applicable tax laws and “pays taxes in all jurisdictions, such as corporate income tax, payroll tax, sales and use tax and VAT”.
Uber has clashed with a number of groups, most notably the taxi drivers in many of the 45 countries that it operates. In London, black cab drivers over the summer staged mass protests, clogging up the streets over complaints that Uber did not have the same regulatory restrictions imposed on them.