Uber avoided millions of dollars in corporate tax, report says

“What is reported are essentially bogus related party transactions that do not reflect any real Uber activity in New Zealand.”

A filing with the Companies Office of Uber New Zealand Technologies Ltd showed that service fee revenue increased from $ 12.8 million in 2019 to $ 3.7 million in 2020, while its profit net after tax fell from $ 222,000 to $ 350,000 as the company reduced its expenses and benefited from a tax credit.

The CICTAR report said the drop in service charges appeared to reflect an increase in the amount of money transferred to the Netherlands.

Ward said Uber was not atypical of other tax-dodging tech giants.

“I think they’ve taken it to another level in terms of the structures they’ve created in New Zealand.”

Tax evasion was “explicitly linked” to the exploitation of its drivers, he said.

“How can an Uber driver in New Zealand negotiate with a shell company in the Netherlands?” “

FIRST Union strategic project coordinator Anita Rosentreter said the report highlighted the “dangerous impact” of businesses in the odd-job economy.

“Uber’s business combines an exploitative work model that denies workers their rights, with a global tax structure that robs the public purse of the tax revenues we all rely on to keep our society prosperous.”

E tū and FIRST Union are taking legal action against Uber, seeking a declaration from the labor court that Uber’s workforce is made up of employees rather than independent contractors.

Last year, the court ruled that a former Uber driver had been an independent contractor and not an employee and therefore could not file a complaint against the company.

In a statement, a spokesperson for Uber New Zealand said the company has created “economic opportunities” in the 14 cities of Aotearoa in which it operates.

“The Uber platform provides flexible income opportunities to tens of thousands of Kiwis, with the vast majority of partner income remaining in the local economy.

“Recently, the Uber platform has also provided a crucial source of income for unemployed people like those in the hospitality industry.”

RNZ


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