Australia flags law to tax corporations that shift profits

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia's government says it will soon introduce legislation aimed at forcing global corporations to pay a fair amount of tax on their Australian earnings.

Treasurer Joe Hockey on Monday said there are 30 corporations that pay little or no tax on the profits from their Australian operations but did not name them.

Under legislation to be introduced to Parliament on Tuesday, the Australian Taxation Office will have the power to charge tax on profits diverted offshore and to fine the corporations an amount equal to the tax evaded.

Tax officials have been posted to the Australian offices of the 30 companies, analyzing the transactions they use to avoid paying tax.

Companies such as Google and Amazon are criticized for moving profits to countries with lower tax rates.