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Google Have to Pay £259m Tax Bill in Italy

Regular readers of this blog will be only too aware of the headlines about google and the subject of income tax. It seems they are always in the news.

Well, it’s happened again, this time in Italy where the Italian government had launched a criminal investigation against the search engine giant.

Experts were expecting this to end up in court where there would have no doubt been a big showdown, but instead the end result is a little less dramatic

It has just been announced that Google will pay the country of Italy exactly £259m, or 306m Euros, which is believed to cover tax that was owed to the government of Italy over the last 10 years.

This is in addition to any income tax that Google has already been paying of course, which means they have definitely handed over a decent amount of change to the Italians…although reluctantly.

Part of the criminal investigation against Google appeared to mention something about taking approximately 1 Billion Euros of revenue out of Italy and putting it into bank accounts throughout Ireland, although Google denies any wrongdoing.

Now that the criminal investigation has been dropped I’m sure that Google and Italy will be friends again, at least for a short while.

If you remember, I reported a while back on how Google paid the UK government £130m, and at the time many people were calling the amount “laughable.”

Obviously the Italians must be better negotiators than us, because they have got paid over £100m more than the UK, despite the fact that Google have a major base in the UK and make far more revenue there.

It really does make you wonder is going on here? Perhaps Google in the UK just have better contractor accountants working for them? Freelance professionals recognise the importance of getting a good accountant…it looks like Google do as well.

This isn’t the first time that Italy have gone after a technology giant, as it was only 2 years ago they got payment on a tax bill for 318 Million Euros from Apple.

So the Italian government have got at least 2 large payments in their bank account recently, it makes you wonder if they have anyone else on their list? Let’s wait to see what happens.

In regards to Google, they still might have more payments to make in Europe because the French government are currently demanding a 1.6 Billion Euro payment for unpaid taxes.

They are planning to launch a criminal investigation soon just like Italy did, although it wouldn’t surprise me if an agreement is made at some point.

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