I’m tired of not fighting on an equal footing with Amazon

As Amazon smiles at its record $12 billion Prime Day sales, small retailers here are urging governments to act urgently to ensure the giants pay their fair share of taxes.

“For years, small independent businesses have been concerned that large multinationals may use complex corporate structures to minimize their taxes in Canada,” he said protocol François Vincent, Vice President for Quebec at the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).

“SMEs understand that competition is part of the equation. All they ask is to be treated fairly compared to their peers in large multinational companies,” he sighs.

“predatory”

“Abusive”, “dangerous”, “predatory” … activist Stacy Mitchell had already criticized in an interview with Amazons Tactics protocol two years ago.

“Amazon uses its power to undermine smaller businesses by charging them exorbitant fees, spying on them, stealing their ideas, or sometimes even closing their accounts in the middle of the night,” she warned.

Minimized sales

However, in recent days an investigation by the globe and mail revealed that Amazon allegedly undervalued its domestic retail sales in order to pay less tax here.

“Their documents show how keen Amazon was to ensure profits flow outside of Canada,” said DT Cochrane, economist for Canadians for Tax Fairness.

“Amazon does a lot of things that are not illegal but are questionable to minimize the profits made in Canada,” he continues.

Amazon did not respond to questions from protocolyesterday.

In the United States, Amazon avoided paying $5.2 billion in corporate taxes and paid just 6% in federal corporate taxes in 2021, according to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP).

Zero tax in Europe

In Europe, Amazon paid no taxes on its $55 billion in sales last year, Bloomberg reported last February.

At the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF), its executive director, Franco Terrazzano, is campaigning for tax cuts to keep the money here.

“To ensure more companies operate, invest and pay taxes in Canada, the government should lower corporate taxes,” he concludes.

–In collaboration with Olivier Bourque

Yesterday, Canada’s Internal Revenue Service declined to comment on Amazon’s specific case, saying it is making “efforts to ensure multinationals pay their share of taxes on profits they generate from doing business in Canada and Canada.” achieve around the world”.

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