Daily Media Briefing 16th May

Daily Media Briefing

 

Posted in: Corporate Reputation, Daily Media Briefing, Supply Chain, Tax

Top Stories

May 16, 2013

Tax

Amazon grants almost match tax bill

Amazon received nearly as much in government grants as it paid in UK tax in 2012, according to new figures. Amazon revealed that it last year paid just £3.1m in total taxes on sales of £4.2bn. Its corporation tax bill was just £2.44m – less than the £2.5m it received from the Scottish Government in inducements to build a new distribution warehouse in Dunfermline. Amazon said: “Amazon pays all applicable taxes in every jurisdiction that it operates within. Like many companies, Amazon has received assistance in relation to major investments in the UK.” The revelation comes amid public unrest over the minimal contribution of Amazon and fellow digital giants Apple and Google to the British public purse. (Financial Times*, Independent, Guardian)

Supply Chain

Cambodia shoe factory collapse kills workers

Cambodian clothing industry workers have been killed in the partial collapse of the shoe factory where they worked, adding to the loss of life in the Asian industry of making garments for the west. A concrete ceiling fell in at the Wing Star Shoes plant in Kampong Speu province, west of the capital, Phnom Penh. It has been suggested that heavy equipment stored above may have caused the collapse. Two people have been reported dead; it is unclear how many more remain trapped. The garment industry is Cambodia's biggest export earner. In 2012 more than $4bn worth of products were shipped to the United States and Europe. (Guardian)

Diversity

Number of women on FTSE 100 boards stalls

The drive to get more women on FTSE 100 boards has suffered a further setback, new figures have revealed. Only 12 percent of directors appointed in the two months to May 1 are women, down from the 50 percent rate seen a year ago, according to data to be published today by the Professional Boards Forum. That means just four out of 34 new directors are female. The upward momentum had already stalled in the previous six months; the latest figures suggest this may be more than a temporary slowdown. The findings raise the possibility that a target of 25 percent female membership of FTSE 100 boards by 2015, set in a government-commissioned report by Lord Davies, may be missed. (Financial Times*)

Renewable Energy

China says EU solar duties to "seriously harm" trade ties

China warned the European Union (EU) today that imposing duties on Chinese solar panels would “seriously harm” bilateral trade ties, upping the tone of its criticism a week after the EU said it would move ahead with hefty penalties in June. The European Commission has agreed to impose average import duties of 47 percent on solar panels from China, according to officials, a move they say is to guard against the dumping of cheap goods in Europe. China’s Ministry of Commerce spokesman Shen Danyang said: “If this information is true, this action by the European Union would seriously harm China-Europe trade relations.” (Reuters)

Corporate Reputation

BP to seek UK PM’s help as oil spill costs escalate

BP will ask the UK Prime Minister, David Cameron, to raise the issue of its rising costs of compensation connected to the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster in 2010 with the US government, as it fears it may become a takeover target, according to reports. The oil giant fears that its financial recovery could be hampered by companies abusing the compensation scheme it set up following the oil spill. It also said that the financial burden of paying fictitious and inflated claims could lead to BP becoming a takeover target. The company is also under pressure, along with other oil majors including Shell and Statoil, following allegations that firms colluded in fixing oil prices. (BBC)

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