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An arrow across Chevron’s bow

Take a bow, warrior, your bow has shot an arrow across Chevron’s bow. The full bench of the Federal Court has found Chevron, the transnational corporation that’s developing our gas on the North West Shelf, who covered themselves with glory by paying $254 (that’s right two hundred and fifty four dollars) tax in 2015 while making millions of dollars of profit, has been rorting the system. The full bench of the Federal Court found the 9.0% interest charged on a loan to Chevron’s subsidiary in Australia by the head company in the United States on money it had borrowed at 1.5% interest was a contrivance entered into by head office in the United States with its Australian subsidiary to illegally minimise its tax liability to the Australian government (more money for public health, public education, public infrastructure etc). Chevron is likely to appeal the full bench of the Federal Court’s decision to the High Court as it’s not just concerned about the 300 million dollars in tax it will have to pay as a result of the two billion dollar loan in question, it has the problem of the two to three billion dollars in tax it will have to pay to the Australian government on a 42 billion dollar loan it has made to its Australian subsidiary (at a reduced interest rate to the current case) if it does not appeal the case.

Considering Chevron will by paying no royalties to the Australian government for the next quarter of a century as a result of contracts signed by the Western Australian and Australian government, it’s time Chevron was forced to have a legal arm transplant so it could reach into its pocket and put a few coins in the out stretched hand of the Australian governments.
You should take a bow, because it’s people like you and me that have forced the Australian government to change Federal legislation so the Chevron case could be pursued. The Australian people have made it clear to all political parties that legislation that allows transnational corporations to legally minimise their tax bill to nothing and in Rupert Murdoch’s case, allowed his companies to legally claim an 886 million dollar tax refund in 2013 while making millions of dollars of profits, must stop.

The current Chevron case is the first step in a war of attrition against the Australian government people like you and me need to pursue to ensure a significant portion of the profits extracted by the privately owned mining sector in Australia are returned to the Australian people for public health, public education and public infrastructure.

Dr. Joseph Toscano

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