Google reveals it paid £36.4m in UK corporation tax in 2015/16

(c) Sky News 2017: <a href="http://news.sky.com/story/google-reveals-it-paid-163364m-in-uk-corporation-tax-in-201516-10819574">Google reveals it paid £36.4m in UK corporation tax in 2015/16</a>
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Google struck a controversial deal with the taxman last year

Google says it paid £36.4m in UK corporation tax in the last financial year, as the internet firm's operations in this country remain mired in controversy.

The US company, which was revealed early last year to have done a £130m deal with the taxman covering 10 years of business, is also at the centre of a more current row over hate videos that has led to a boycott by advertisers.

The financial settlement with HMRC - hailed as a victory at the time by then-Chancellor George Osborne - was described by Google as paying the full 20% rate due on its UK profits.

However, critics said the sum was "derisory" given its revenues.

Google reported on Friday that it paid £36.4m on pre-tax profits of £148.8m in the year to 30 June. Revenues fell to £1bn, it said.

That compared to a £46.2m bill covering the previous 18 months.

A spokesman said: "As an international business, we pay the majority of our taxes in our home country, as well as all the taxes due in the UK.

"We have recently announced significant new investment in the UK, including new offices in Kings Cross for 7,000 staff."

The debate over tax avoidance for multi-national firms, amid an effort to bring new international rules, has centred on forcing companies such as Google, Facebook (NasdaqGS: FB - news) and Starbucks (Hanover: SRB.HA - news) to book profits in the countries where they are made.

The Lib Dem shadow chancellor, Susan Kramer, claimed Google was shirking its responsibilities.

"It is appalling that Google are still getting away with paying such a paltry amount of their total revenue back in taxes.

"This Government is already struggling with the Brexit squeeze, if they want to stop cutting vital services they need to start picking up what is owed to the British people.

"The Government seem to be letting big online businesses off the hook, while small businesses, the heart of our high streets get whacked by ever increasing business rates. It's totally and utterly unfair."

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