Microsoft announced this week that it has settled the Australian tax audit. At the same time, Apple's managing director informed that the five-year audit by the ATO has been concluded with no penalty imposed.
Microsoft has been criticized for lowering its local tax payments by routing sales made to Australian customers through Singapore. Following this criticism, Microsoft now officially reached an agreement with the ATO, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President of Worldwide Tax Mr Daniel Goff informed.
Mr Goff said that the company did not have a formal Advance Pricing Arrangement with the tax office and that it had agreed on an amount Microsoft was likely to earn and the likely income tax payable until 2022. He requested disclosing the details of the settlement only to the committee, to avoid tipping off corporate competitors, News.com.au informed.
Apple’s managing director Tony King informed that the ATO had concluded its five-year audit into Apple earlier this year and imposed no penalty. The ATO found Apple's taxes were up to date, he said, and the company was committed to keeping authorities abreast of any changes. King said Apple had a straightforward business model in Australia, insisting the company recorded all its transactions and revenue locally.
Google and Facebook will also face an inquiry, which is looking at tax avoidance by multinationals operating in Australia. ATO tries to find out whether Australia’s current tax laws are adequate and companies are complying with existing laws.
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