Google to face another grilling from MPs on tax

GOOGLE and Ernst & Young will be hauled in front of MPs after new allegations emerged about the technology giant’s UK tax affairs.

Labour MP Margaret Hodge, who chairs the Public Accounts Committee, said she would bring in Google’s Northern Europe chief Matt Brittin, as well as the company’s auditor Ernst & Young, to be questioned about comments Brittin made when previously grilled by the group of MPs.

Google claims that all the advertising space it sells to UK businesses are sold from Ireland, with UK employees not involved in the process.

However, an investigation from Reuters alleged that Google’s job listings call for sales staff in the UK and that British companies which advertise on the search engine deal with staff in London.

If this was found to be true, Google could potentially incur a massive tax bill, since around a tenth of the firm’s sales are from the UK.

Hodge said she would quickly bring Google back in front of MPs, six months after the company, along with Amazon and Starbucks, endured a public dressing down from the committee.

Google yesterday called the allegations “wilfully misleading” and denied claims it employs sales staff in the UK.

In response to the questions raised about the firm’s job listings, Google said: “Our advertisements for UK staff sometimes refer to sales skills and many of the roles include sales in the title as we are seeking to attract people with those skills.

“We comply with all the tax rules in the UK.”