Tuesday, May 5, 2009

US taxes disappear in Dutch-Irish-Bermuda triangle (Updated)

Updated: And the Dutch react to the Obama "slur."

From Radio Netherlands

Obama targets "tax haven" Netherlands

The Netherlands is a corporate tax haven for US multinationals, and together with Ireland and Bermuda it is sheltering companies' earnings from the American tax authorities, president Barack Obama said on Monday. As long as they keep their earnings overseas US companies are legally exempt from paying. Taxes only become due when the money is "repatriated" to the United States.

The current practice is perfectly legal, but the US government considers it harmful to the American economy. President Obama announced a crackdown on the tax shelters, aiming to raise 210 billion dollars in taxes over the next decade. A Wall Street Journal report in April quoted a figure of 58 billion dollars in overseas earnings, which are out of the tax office's reach, losing it an estimated 20 billion dollars in tax revenue. One-third of the foreign profits in 2003 came from, what the US Treasury calls, "three small, low-tax countries: Bermuda, the Netherlands, and Ireland".

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