This morning on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Simon Jack, a business reporter, ended his short piece with a comment on the fact that Tui Travel paid very little UK CT last year, despite record profits. This, he correctly stated, was due to their use of brought forward losses.
Unfortunately, he then commented that this was perfectly legal “but still controversial”.
No, Simon Jack, the use of losses in this way is anything but controversial. It is a fundamental part of the way that the CT regime operates in the UK.
I challenged him on his comments via Twitter and his response was:
“know its not controv in biz circles but like legal practice of transf profits to low tax regions, it will strike many as odd/bad”
Call me old fashioned, but I believe that people like Simon Jack have a responsibility to report honestly and responsibly. The debate on the UK tax system is being poisoned by irresponsible and emotive argument that ignores the facts. If, as he implies, Simon Jack knows that the use of brought forward losses is normal, then to state otherwise on the radio is irresponsible.