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Google to pay $185 million in back taxes to Britain

Staff writer |
Google has agreed to pay 130 million pounds ($185 million) in back taxes to the UK. British finance minister George Osborne welcomed the deal, saying it reflected new rules that he had introduced.

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Google, now part of Alphabet, has been under pressure in recent years over its practice of channelling most profits from European clients through Ireland to Bermuda, where it pays no tax on them.

In 2013, the company faced a UK parliamentary inquiry after a Reuters investigation showed the firm employed hundreds of salespeople in Britain despite saying it did not conduct sales in the country, a key plank in its tax arrangements.

Google said late the 130 million pounds would settle a probe by the British tax authority, which had challenged the company's low tax returns for the years since 2005. It said it had also agreed a basis on which tax in the future would be calculated.

"The way multinational companies are taxed has been debated for many years and the international tax system is changing as a result. This settlement reflects that shift," a Google spokesman said.

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