WELCOME TO THE REAL DODGE CITY; EXPOSED: The Tax Havens Hiding Billions from the Taxman. and Britain Is One of the Biggest

Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland), February 13, 2011 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

WELCOME TO THE REAL DODGE CITY; EXPOSED: The Tax Havens Hiding Billions from the Taxman. and Britain Is One of the Biggest


Byline: NICHOLAS SHAXSON

TAX havens are bigger and badder than most of us realise. One way or another, half of all world trade is routed through them.

Much of this business is technically legal - but that's not to say it isn't a problem.

Pretty much every big name on the high street uses them to cut their tax bills - helping them undercut your local shops for reasons that have nothing to do with real efficiency and everything to do with bilking the taxpayer.

And the biggest users are the banks. Royal Bank of Scotland, Lloyds and Barclays alone have 550 offshore subsidiaries.

It's not just about tax. Offshore financial regulation is lighter meaning banks can grow faster. They have used tax havens for years to amass wealth and power like never before.

But there's a big myth out there. Most people imagine tax havens as the palmfringed Cayman Islands, or Monaco and Switzerland.

These are tax havens, of course, but if you analyse what these places offer - secrecy, low or zero taxes, looser financial regulation and other escape routes from the rules of democratic society elsewhere - you will find that the world's biggest providers of these things are the United States, Luxembourg, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Ireland&and the UK.

Yes, we live in one of the world's biggest tax havens.

Two things are happening here. First, ordinary taxpayers are being stiffed by our own wealthy individuals and corporations sending their money offshore.

Second, Britain sucks money back in from elsewhere by being a tax haven.

My book Treasure Islands tells how Britain runs a network of semi-independent tax havens around the world, from Bermuda to Gibraltar to Jersey.

These places hoover up money and business from places nearby and send it to the City of London. Jersey alone provided $218billion in bank deposits for city banks in the second quarter of 2009.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

WELCOME TO THE REAL DODGE CITY; EXPOSED: The Tax Havens Hiding Billions from the Taxman. and Britain Is One of the Biggest
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?