Apple's Covent Garden store in London

Apple’s Covent Garden store in London

Apple’s three main British subsidiaries - Apple (UK), Apple Europe and Apple Retail UK – paid no corporation tax in 2012 despite reporting profits of £68m ($103m), reports the Financial Times.

Apple did not pay UK corporation tax last year, according to its latest filings, which are likely to underline the controversy over the US tech giant’s tax planning [...] Tax deductions from share awards to employees helped wipe out the corporate tax liabilities of the UK subsidiaries in the year to September 2012. In the previous year, the tax reported by the UK subsidiaries was £11.4m … 

While share awards to employees are a legitimate tax-deductible expense, questions are likely to be asked about whether the employees were genuinely based in the UK following previous allegations of creative tax-avoidance moves by Apple. Apple had previously been accused of agreeing a special 2 percent corporation tax arrangement in Ireland, an accusation the company denied.

A Senate hearing into Apple’s tax affairs proved rather anti-climatic, with each side simply repeating its previously-stated positions.

Apple is one of a number of global corporations whose international tax affairs have come under scrutiny recently, with Google another notable company to face scrutiny.

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