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Sharon tells multinationals to "Own up, Pay up!" Sharon Bowles MEP holding sign saying Own Up, Pay Up!

Last year multinational firms avoided taxes of more than £165 billion in the developing world. Sharon Bowles has launched a new campaign to highlight these immoral tax dodgers telling them to own up and pay up!

Currently, multinational companies only need to submit consolidated accounts where their company is registered - normally in a developed western country. This allows some large companies to hide details of their business activities abroad. They can then avoid paying taxes with the money going into off-shore savings accounts instead.

These hidden, tax-dodging businesses are often based in poorer countries that have rich natural resources but poor infrastructure, and lack democratic governments. As well as not paying fair taxes, these companies sometimes secretly pay money to governments in exchange for the rights to extract the country's resources, such as oil, coal, and lumber.

Sharon said "Multinational companies can no longer get away with avoiding taxes or not disclosing their dodgy payments. Since I became chair of the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee, I have pushed the European Commission to ensure that these firms agree to declare full details of their operations in all countries. The Commission has made a good start, and has published proposals for more detailed reporting by industries who extract natural resources from a country. However I believe the proposals should cover all industries, and I will work to ensure that all companies own up, and pay up!"

Show your support by signing Sharon's petition calling on companies to "Own up, Pay up!"

Sharon's amendments to the Accounting and Transparency Directives can be read here.

Sharon's amendments to the 'Union programme to support specific activities in the field of financial reporting and auditing for the period of 2014-2020' can be read here.