CBI chief: stop moralising over firms’ taxes

SIR ROGER Carr has called on politicians to stop moralising about tax evasion because it is predominantly a legal matter.

Speaking at an Oxford Business School event, the CBI president claimed that responsible judgement and corporate reputation were the crucial factors in deciding tax schemes.

“Tax evasion is about the law and about right and wrong in the eyes of the law. It’s not about black and white moral judgements in the eyes of God,” he said.

His comments were in contrast to those of Margaret Hodge MP, chair of the Public Accounts Committee. During Google vice president Matt Brittin’s testimony on Thursday, Hodge accused the company of unethical behaviour. “You’re a company that says you do no evil, and I think you do evil in that you use smoke and mirrors to avoid paying tax,” she said.

David Cameron waded into the tax debate yesterday too. In a letter to the UK’s dependencies and overseas territories, he asked for increased transparency on tax.