[INFOGRAPHIC] BHP Billiton gets ahead of Hockey's tax avoidance crackdown
In an attempt to get ahead of Treasurer Joe Hockey’s crackdown on tax avoidance from the top 30 high-risk global companies operating in Australia, mining giant BHP Billiton will reveal the amount of tax it pays for each of its international mining projects in order to become “absolutely transparent.”
Last month, Hockey revealed he will introduce legislation on Sept. 16 to counter tax avoidance by several multinational companies to prevent tax evasion. His push to make sure giant companies pay more tax on profit has also gained support from the UK.
“If (multinational companies) are not paying the taxes they should, they are stealing from the community,” said Hockey. “Many Australians would agree that if companies make profits in Australia, they should pay tax in Australia.
"If they don’t pay their dues, we will hit them with 100 per cent plus the interest they owe.”
BHP already provides nation-by-nation tax information in its annual Sustainability Report, but will now release its first-ever stand-alone tax report later this year.
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“This reflects our commitment to paying our fair share and being absolutely transparent so we can have the sort of frank and honest debate we need to have about a range of policy issues in Australia — including taxation,” said BHP finance director Peter Beaven.
Meanwhile, rival Rio Tinto publishes its own tax report that includes country and level-of-government payments, which is viewed by most as the most detailed among the nation’s top companies.
BHP and Rio are two of the top-10 taxpayers in Australia, and both companies have received criticism for putting its revenue into its Singapore hub where the tax rate can be as low as five per cent.
According to Beaven, the majority of the operation is taxed through the Controlled Foreign Company rules.
“The fact is almost 100 per cent of the profit from the sale of Australian commodities, from mine to customer, is subject to Australian tax, totaling $8.7 billion in taxes and royalties in Australia in the 2014 financial year,” said Beaven.
Timeline: India takes unicorn leap with six in five days
We chart an historic week in India’s tech industry, where in just five days, between 5-9 April 2021, the country achieved six new unicorns, bringing India’s total to 10 in 2021 to date, an immense unicorn leap from just seven in 2020 and six in 2019.
April 5: Meesho
India’s first social commerce unicorn, Meesho raised US$300m from SoftBank, Facebook and Shunwei Capital, giving the Bangalore-based startup a US$2.1bn valuation, a threefold jump from its previous funding round in 2019. Founded in 2015 by two IIT-Delhi graduates, Meesho connects producers and resellers, helping small businesses sell through social media. It has 45m customers and has enabled 13m entrepreneurs to start their online businesses with no investment.
April 6: CRED
Founded just over two years ago, Bangalore-based credit card repayment app CRED raised US$215m from Falcon Edge Capital and Coatue, nearly trebling its valuation to US$2.2bn from its January US$80m round. Allowing customers to pay off their credit card debt while earning CRED coins which they cash in for rewards, CRED has grown rapidly during COVID-19, doubling its customer base to nearly 6 million in a year.
April 7: API Holdings / Groww
The first epharmacy startup to gain unicorn status, PharmEasy (API Holdings), which has digitised 60,000 brick and mortar pharmacies and 400 doctors across India, raised US$350m in a round led by Prosus Ventures. Founded by four former Flipkart employees as a way of making investing simple, investment platform Groww became India’s second-youngest fintech unicorn, raising US$83m in Series D funding led by Tiger Global, quadrupling its previous round in September.
April 8: ShareChat
New Delhi-grown social media startup ShareChat, founded in 2016 by Mohalla Tech raised US$502m from Lightspeed Ventures, Tiger Global, Twitter and Snap taking its raised total over six rounds to US$766m and pushing its valuation to US$2.1bn. The funding will be used to grow its user base and short video platform Moj, which launched in 2020 following TikTok’s ban in India. The regional language startup claims 280m users.
April 9: Gupshup
AI-led conversational message startup joined the unicorn club after raising US$100m from Tiger Global giving it a ten-fold valuation of US$1.4bn. The smart messaging platform, which has seen accelerated growth during the pandemic, was founded in Bangalore in 2005 by serial entrepreneur Beerud Sheth, whose online freelancing platform Elance is now listed. Gupshup’s API enables 100,000+ businesses to build messaging and conversation experiences across 30+ communication channels.