Thought leadership

Technology giants will be forced to pay tax on the sales they generate in the UK, under new plans announced in the Budget. Chancellor Philip Hammond plans to introduce a digital services tax from April 2020 following a consultation.

He said “established tech giants” will be targeted rather than start-ups. Companies such as Amazon and Facebook have been criticised for the small amount of tax they pay in the UK.

Both the 36-member OECD and the European Commission have been trying to reach a consensus on imposing a digital tax on social media platforms, internet marketplaces and search engines.

However, Mr Hammond said that progress was “painfully slow”. He said: “It is clearly not sustainable or fair that digital platform businesses can generate substantial value in the UK without paying tax here.”