UK calls for country-by-country reporting

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The Guardian has reported that:

The UK is backing calls to force multi national companies to reveal precisely how much tax they pay in each jurisdiction they operate in. The move is being hailed as a significant breakthrough towards ending tax secrecy.

Stephen Timms, the financial secretary to the Treasury, will tell G20 ministers gathering for a meeting in Berlin next week that country-by-country reporting should be introduced. At present, companies do not need to reveal what tax or profits they make in many countries.

The move, welcomed by non- governmental organisations and campaigners for the developing world, will be strongly resisted by international mining firms, which for decades have negotiated secret deals that deny developing countries huge sums in lost revenue.

David McNair, senior economic adviser at Christian Aid, said: "We see country-by-country reporting as a key mechanism for developing countries so they have the information they need to identify companies that dodge tax and to ensure they have enough money to invest in health and education."

Good news.