back to article Google India must pay back-taxes on $225m after cheekily funneling cash through Ireland

Google has been ordered to pay business taxes on 14,570m rupees ($224m) of profit to the Indian government after losing a six-year legal battle. The nation's Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) decided this week that Google India had engaged in a "clear and conspicuous" case of tax evasion when it sent all of its pay dirt to …

  1. Anonymous Coward


    Everyone knows that only proper European tech subsidiaries can funnel are allowed to funnel revenues through Ireland!!

  2. Steven Guenther

    Double Dutch - Irish Twist

    They are not giving profits to Irish branch, they are paying for licenses. The Irish License is a Before tax expense that the India office has to pay. Just because that expense matches up to the profit of the branch, it only sounds fishy. This kind of EVIL SCAM is what Trump is trying to protect the US from.

    I guess the days of "don't be evil" are long past for the Alphabet Gang.

    1. Aitor 1

      Re: Double Dutch - Irish Twist

      You must be joking. This kind of evil scam is what Trump wants to PROTECT.

      Has he done anything about it? no? as I expected.

      1. wallaby

        Re: Double Dutch - Irish Twist

        And Trump wont....

        all he cares about is saying the right thing to get the rednecks voting for him, whilst doing everything he can for profit and his own deluded sense of power and warped thinking.

        That man is worse than a psychopath with a gun.... he's a psychopath with an army at his beck and call

        Its the secret service who protect him I feel sorry for - a gun on your belt and you cant ..... you just cant....

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Double Dutch - Irish Twist

      I guess the days of "don't be evil" are long past for the Alphabet Gang.

      They never actually existed. That was only ever just marketing.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    While in no way excusing google for their tax evasion, its a little ironic that India is accusing a multinational of sending (profits) offshore, when India must be the place most jobs are off shored to by multinationals.

    Maybe 1st world counties should start taxing multinationals the equivalent wage that a job off-shored would have generated if it hadn't gone to India.

    1. Mark 110

      So you are blaming the Indian tax authorities for Western companies hiring cheap Indian labour?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        It is ironic though that India is complaining about companies using globalization (globalized tax regimes in this case) to avoid higher costs in the country of sale.... as India is basically one large labor cost dodge for multi nationals to avoid paying a higher cost for labor where the products/services are sold. Google apparently went a bit too far in this case, but companies running taxes through low tax countries is standard.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          India is basically one large labor cost dodge for multi nationals

          Do you earn less than a Google employee in San Francisco ? If so you are part of a global labour cost dodge

  4. ratfox
    Paris Hilton

    As it has done repeatedly in Europe, Google Ireland "licenses" the American web giant's Adwords technology, through which it makes most of is money, to other subsidiaries in Europe

    Now I might be mistaken, but I believe this is completely wrong.

    If I understand correctly, Google Ireland is not licensing Adwords to other European subsidiaries; it is simply the only Google subsidiary selling ads in Europe.

    If you go to Google France and you ask them about ads, they will advise you, then put you in contact with their counterparts in Ireland who will sign the actual contract. Google Ireland pays Google France a small stipend for their services, and keeps most of the money.

    The problem in Europe is not the licensing of technology; it is the European law which allows Google Ireland to sell in other countries while only paying taxes in Ireland... (And as a separate issue, to pay almost no taxes in Ireland through licensing arrangements involving Netherlands, but that's a separate issue, which Europe is trying to fix)

    1. old_iron

      In a former life, whilst providing services in the UK that were sold, delivered and (supposedly therefore) invoiced in UK, we were threatened with losing them as a customer if we didn't send the invoices to Ireland WITHOUT VAT.

      Our CFO bravely told them to stick their business.

      We weren't paid

  5. Dazed and Confused

    Witholding tax

    When I work in India I have to pay Indian withholding tax. They give me a certificate for this money which I then pass on to the UK taxman so I don't have to pay tax on it twice. Seems fair that Google has to do the same.

    Our useless revenue service should do the same. Any profit made by multi-nationals in the UK should be taxed in the UK, they can then have a certificate for that tax which they can then use to avoid double taxation in their chosen tax haven.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Witholding tax

      But Google India didn't make any money, because of the cost of buying licences from Google Ireland.

      What you should have done is have your dad charge you a fee for using his surname, you could knock this off your Indian wages

  6. anothercynic Silver badge

    While I usually...

    ... have a dim view on the usual shrill 'they cheat' rhetoric that gets bandied about for the likes of Google, this time... this time the authorities are right on the money.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: While I usually...

      Compared to some, this is almost legit.

      When Uranium was selling $70/lb Cameco in Canda were selling all their production to a company in Switzerland for $1/lb - damn good negotiators the Swiss. Guess who wholly owned the swiss importer ....

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Two things certain in life

    Death and corporations not paying taxes.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Two things certain in life

      Death and corporations not paying taxes.

      I am pretty sure Death does pay his taxes, and even occasionally gets Audited. After all, this is what paid for Bill Door's retirement.

  8. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse

    Dodgy as f**k...

    This is just one major racket. Just outlaw the whole ability for any companies or supposed subsidiary arms under the same corporate structure to be able to buy (or "license") anything from the other.

    1. Mark 110

      Re: Dodgy as f**k...

      Wouldn't work - theres plenty of legitimate reasons for that arrangement.

      Using it between subsidiaries to move profits to the lowest taxpaying subsidiary is well dodgy though.

  9. wyatt

    If everyone started paying the right tax, I wonder how much things would go up by to sustain their profit margins?

    1. Gareth Douglas

      If your only concern in life is to ensure that wealthy share-holders get richer while workers and the other 95% of people who are not share-holders get a little bit poorer through having to pay more tax to make up for the corporate profit-takers, you have a sad outlook my friend.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Welcome to Google India.

    Thank you for your web search. Your search is important to us and our customer care agents are busy compiling a list of search results. We will endeavour to call you within 72 hours. If there is anything else we can help you with today, please let us know at

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