MULTINATIONALS’  NEWS

Many Multinational Corporations (= Transnational Corporations = TNCs) use Transfer Pricing, Financial Instruments, Tax Havens, Charitable Trusts, Family Trusts, Sovereign Trusts, and other unethical methods of avoiding Company and other Taxation, then use the surplus funds to outbid and outsell competitors, thus gaining both windfall profits, regular "super profits," and effective access to the political leaders.

News snippets and other documentation give evidence that the predatory Transnational Corporations (TNCs) use their political donations and statements that they might cut employment levels if they do not get "proper consideration," and so actually induce governments to give them MORE privileges, tax concessions, and tax-funded government payments than most ordinary people (the real taxPAYERS) would even dream of requesting for themselves unless there was a regional calamity like a flood.

Links are also listed on this Website to find ethical multinational corporations.

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A MULTINATIONAL CORPORATION ATTACKS A NATIONAL BROADCASTER for the second time, using a powerful international forum to attack!!! The European Commission is investigating claims that Rupert Murdoch's Sky News channel is suffering unfair competition from the BBC's new 24-hour news service. See "News 24 under EU scrutiny," by Martin Walker in Brussels and Simon Beavis, in The Guardian, Wednesday April 8, 1998, United Kingdom, at: http://reports.guardian.co.uk/papers/19980407-18.html

SPECULATION, DEPENDENCE, AND COLLAPSE IN S-E ASIA: Speculation, Foreign Capital Dependence and the Collapse of the Southeast Asian Economies at http://www.essential.org/monitor/mm1998/mm9801.05.html

EXPORT OF JOBS, General Motors to Mexico: The Australian Broadcasting Commission's (ABC's) Foreign Correspondent programme on 23 June and 26 June 1998 had a piece on a factory in the US which basically moved to Mexico as a result of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) -- understood to be a model for or precursor of the MAI. The journalist Mark Bannermann interviewed American workers who had lost their jobs, then looked at the working and living conditions endured by the Mexicans who had displaced them.
Jim Miller used to earn $18 an hour at the General Motors plant in Bloomington Indiana. He's now unemployed, and travelled with ABC Washington correspondent, Mark Bannerman, to Juarez in Mexico where his job had been transported. His Mexican counterparts are paid 53 cents an hour and don't enjoy the same conditions and safety standards as the Bloomington plant. The influx of jobs has made Juarez, just across the border from Texas, a third world "boom town," where the grinding poverty and inhuman working conditions yield a harvest of degradation, vice, murder, and hopelessness. The American worker is impressive in his compassion and understanding of who's really responsible for the plight of both workforces.
WWW: Foreign Correspondent web page at http://www.abc.net.au/foreign/, Episode 39, Series 7 -- 23.6.98

GLOBALISATION, MEXICAN WORKERS EXPLOITED: Toy Factory:This is a good illustration of the actual outcomes of globalization. It's the story of Mattel's takeover and subsequent closure of the Fischer-Price toy factory, and the export of the jobs to Mexico, and the conditions for the workers there. http://www.thenation.com/issue/961230/1230pres.htm

INVESTMENT ADVISER WARNS OF INEQUITY TENDING TO A RECESSION: Some articles citing Marc Faber, the Investment Advisor interviewed by George Negus on Foreign Correspondent (?) this week, who warns of the danger of a global recession, especially based on globalisation and the inequity between rich and poor countries, and the rich and poor within countries, can be read at: http://netserve.aim.edu.ph/homepage/action/amca/dmf.htm
Brief biography: http://www.abc.net.au/rn/talks/bbing/stories/s10506.htm ABC Background Briefing's "Crying Tigers"
http://www.iht.com/IHT/MONEY/110197/my110197.html International Herald Tribune's Money Report Q&A with Marc Faber
http://www.smh.com.au/daily/archive/960924/business/960924-business2.html Max Walsh SMH article of September '96 re Faber and Hong Kong
http://www.adtrading.com/adt10/faber.hts Applied Derivatives Trading (also interesting for its beginners' guide)

DICTATORS GIVING DONATIONS TO U.S. LEADERS: Have people with links to dictatorships lobbied and given donations to the top U.S. leaders?
"We should not reward China with improved trade status when it has continued to trade goods made by prison labor and has failed to make significant progress on human rights since the Tiananmen massacre." -- Bill Clinton & Al Gore, in their 1992 book Putting People First. Wonderful what some campaign donations can achieve!
For an amazing guide to how international crooks like Jiang Zemin manage to lobby Washington, see "So you want to trade with a dictator", http://www.mojones.com/mother_jones/MJ98/silverstein.html
A Reader's Digest article on how people with links to the Beijing and Jakarta dictatorships allegedly made donations to a U.S. electoral campaign was entitled: "The White House: Was It Really For Sale?" -- A behind-the-scenes look at the Asian money scandal, by Rowland Evans and Robert Novak, archived on RD website 5 June 97 at http://www.readersdigest.com/:ed35o5*TEMPLATE=/rd/magazine/htp/rdm_sf.htp@session=g1ehq5

TAXPAYERS TO GUARANTEE MULTINATIONALS: The Australian Federal Parliament has helped to establish an international fund to guarantee, that is, to use taxpayers' funds to pay, multinational investors who suffer losses arising from civil war, currency transfer restrictions, a government takeover, or breach of contract by a government. This agreement binds for three years.
This is in the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency Act, No. 126, 1997. To view Australia's MIGA Act in full (for those with Acrobat Reader), go to the Parliamentary search page http://www.aph.gov.au/simpsrch.asp and type "Titles beginning with M" (must be in quotes). Then click on Bills Starting with M and scroll down until the Multilateral . . . item appears.
Wouldn't it be wonderful if small traders, farmers, and professionals could be recouped by the taxpayer for the similar problems they face, such as grafitti, vandalism, riotous parties, union or company bans, takeover or harmful change of policy by any level of government, or broken government promises?

DEVASTATING IMPACT OF BIG CORPORATIONS ON PEOPLE AND THE EARTH: Al Anderson, of USA, in his MAI Page, writes: "Worldwide, the super-rich and their multinational corporate empires are inflicting a devastating impact on the rest of the earth's residents, and on their environment. So, while an elite few live in luxury, increasing millions are either homeless in their 'home' countries or unwanted refugees in foreign countries, often under life-threatening conditions." See his arguments in A Critique of the MAI at http://www.efn.org/~andersen/paine.html
And see A MAI-Day Alert   Why is Globalization Bad? MAI, Part 2   How To Make Globalization Work -- MAI, Part 3

CORPORATE "WELFARE" for the big banks. Hanno Beck of the Progress Report and Economic Justice Update in the U.S.A. asks: Will the U.S.A. give $18 billion in handouts to the IMF (International Monetary Fund)? The final showdown vote in the House of Representatives has not yet occurred. Please contact your representative to find out their opinion on the $18 billion handout, and either urge him/her to oppose it, or thank them if they already oppose it. But note -- although the Senate resumes business on July 6, the House is still on July 4th recess all the way until the 13th. And for more information on the IMF bailout issue, look near the foot of the Progress Report Archive at: http://www.progress.org/archive

"WORLD BANK TO BILL ITS VICTIMS" (IN SOUTH AMERICA), by Abid Aslam. "The World Bank, found by its own inspection panel to have botched one of the world's most ambitious hydroelectric projects, is offering to correct some of its mistakes - if its Paraguayan victims foot the bill.
"The Bank is drafting proposals to help resettle tens of thousands of Paraguayans whose homes and livelihoods have been or will be flooded by the 67-km Yacyreta dam, according to officials here. The proposals would involve 'a mix of new loans and redirected revenues' from sales of the dam's electricity, said Tony Gaeta, spokesman for the Bank's Latin America department.
"Under such a scheme, 'the Paraguayan people will be paying for damage wrought by Bank loans to Argentina,' warned Dana Clark, senior attorney at the Centre for International Environmental Law (CIEL)." Click the Progress Report's page: http://www.progress.org/imfwb.htm

CORPORATE "WELFARE" (2): Ford gets tax cut, but it sought more, Cleveland Plain Dealer©, Saturday, May 02, 1998, By V. David Sartin, Plain Dealer reporter: BROOK PARK - County tax officials have granted a $111,000 tax cut to the aging Engine Plant No. 1 at the Ford Motor Co. complex. However, members of the Board of Revision denied a request from Ford for reductions that would have brought an additional savings of about $650,000 to the firm. See: http://www.cleveland.com:80/news/pdnews/metro/c3ford.htm

CORPORATE "WELFARE" (3): Mettler/ Toledo Scales and McGraw-Hill: LEWIS CENTER, Ohio -- The Olentangy Local Board of Education, which was known for its opposition to a proposed Polaris mall, is welcoming two companies that will open offices in the Polaris complex. The school board this week approved two resolutions in support of tax-abatement agreements made by the city of Columbus with Mettler/ Toledo Scales and McGraw-Hill. Under the agreement, Mettler/ Toledo Scales will get a 10-year, 65 percent tax abatement, realizing $617,026 in property-tax savings over 10 years. The school district will receive $252,953 annually in additional property taxes from Mettler/Toledo Scales. McGraw-Hill will receive a 10- year, 75 percent tax abatement, reaping $1.56 million in tax savings over 10 years. See The Columbus Dispatch ©, Ohio, report by Jane Hawes: http://www.dispatch.com:80/pan/localarchive/olennws.html

FOREIGN FIRMS PAY 9% OF AUSTRALIA'S TAX:  "Then we were provided with a printout from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (Document No. 5506.0 [1995-96]) that further confirmed that the foreigners were paying little or no tax.
"This showed that total tax revenue stood at $115 billion, while it further confirmed little or no tax was paid by the foreigners. According to our calculations the country could not possibly survive on a tax income of $115 billion.
"(Obviously there is a great deal of tax avoidance involved, affecting this figure.) It is interesting to note that Australians paid $105 billion (91%) and the foreigners paid only $10 billion (9%). And yet they own an estimated ninety per cent of the corporate sector, which embraces almost all of the large companies in Australia."   The Great Australian Swindle Mk II -- Austand, at: http://www.gwb.com.au/gwb/news/mai/austand.html

TRANSFER PRICING: "Transfer pricing" links, General, UK, and USA at: http://www.tax.org.uk/html/transfer_price.htm
United Kingdom trying to change law on Transfer Pricing, at: http://www.lancs.ac.uk/users/law/intlaw/ibuslaw/docs/ir-tp.htm
REDUCING TAXATION: A Canadian book list on reducing taxation for small business and families at:
http://www.fedpubs.com/subject/taxation.htm

TRANSFER PRICING AFFECTS TAXATION: "Transfer pricing -- the prices established for transferring goods and services across national borders within the same group of companies -- is a major issue today for both multinational and national tax administrations. Many factors influence the profitability of multinationals, but transfer pricing is significant for both taxpayers and tax administration because it affects the allocation of profits from intra-group transactions between the different tax jurisdictions in which a multinational group operates." This is the wording of an OECD Webpage that advertised a 1996 symposium in Sydney. Click: http://www.oecd.org/news_and_events/release/nw96-96a.htm

ATTEMPT TO GET CORPORATIONS TO PAY MORE: A 1995 U.S. attempt to gather more taxation from multinationals, under the Senate's "Kohl amendment," which seems to have failed to pass then (no more recent information available), attempted to charge taxes on share sales of foreign entities, and to override foreign treaties before or after the passage of the bill, can be studied at: http://www.pmstax.com/intl/bull9511.html

HIGHER TAX RATES SELDOM PRODUCE MUCH REVENUE: "The history of tax-rate increases shows that they seldom produce much revenue. Their principal effect is to make higher taxes on the poor and the middle class more palatable. In fact, because of inflation and real growth of the economy, in just a few years tax rates originally imposed on the rich often apply to those with middle incomes. The rich, meanwhile, often evade higher rates by making increased use of deductions and other legal tax shelters." So wrote Bruce Bartlett, former U.S. deputy assistant treasury secretary for economic policy, and a visiting fellow at the Cato Institute, in Policy Analysis No. 192, April 8, 1993. There is an interesting chart showing what percentage of taxation the super-rich and others pay in the U.S.   Click: http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-192.html

EVADING TAX; AND BENEFIT TO THE HOME COUNTRY: "A much more mundane example of international capital movements is the cross-border flows of bank deposits within Europe by individuals who are seeking to evade tax on their interest income. Although I have seen no estimates of the amount of capital that evades the tax authorities in this way, the high levels of tax rates on domestic interest income makes me believe that these amounts of illicit deposits might well be quite large."
"When a U.S. subsidiary borrows abroad at an after-tax cost of funds that is substantially less than the real return on capital, the process confers a net benefit to the United States." Both quotes are from a speech by Martin Feldstein in Kiel at the Institut fur Weltwirtschaft, during a Savings Conference on 14 January 1997. It is long and difficult, but shows how some economists think. Click: http://www.skandia.se/group_sparsem/tax_policy_a.htm

BENEFIT PRINCIPLE, RATHER THAN ABILITY TO PAY -- AUSTRALIAN INQUIRY: "The Committee came to the conclusion that the benefit principle rather than ability-to-pay was the most equitable and rational basis of public revenue-raising. In other words, the Committee resolved not to equate revenue-raising with simply taxing wealth. It was reinforced in this view by its belief that the redistribution of income and wealth was not a primary function of local government. It was moreover impressed with the view that - in any community - the legitimate generation of income and wealth through labour, skill and enterprise should be encouraged rather than penalised.
"By contrast, the ability-to-pay principle related levels of taxation primarily to levels of income. It explicitly provided for redistribution from upper to lower income groups in the community. Carried to its logical conclusion, it implied equality of sacrifice, which ultimately meant taxing all wealth and incomes down to the lowest common denominator of sacrifice - a proposition which the Committee was not disposed to endorse." These paragraphs come from the 1989 Brisbane City Council's Committee of Inquiry into Valuation and Rating. A Summary of the Committee's two-volume Report on its Deliberations and Findings is at: http://www.landvaluetax.org/fbrisbne.htm

$1.5 Bn SUBSIDIES FOR TIMBER INDUSTRY, U.S.A.: Ben Russell, of The Council for Economic Inquiry in the U.S.A. http://www.mtncom.com/cip/econinqu.htm has exposed the cost to the citizens of the subsidies to the timber industry there. In response to an article entitled "Time to End Subsidies for Timber Industry," by Laura Ephraim (Arkansas' Campaign Coordinator for the US Public Interest Research Group) and published in The Baxter Bulletin on June 21 1998, Mr. Russell wrote a letter to the editor, which appeared on June 29, appropriately headed "End Taxation by Sharing Nature's Worth." He wrote: "In the Geonomist 1998 Spring/Summer issue, we read that The Forest Service spends over $2 billion a year building logging roads, burning slash, trying to control erosion, and performing other timber related activities. Meanwhile revenues from these companies amount to less than $400 million each year which means it annually provides over $1.5 billion worth of services to the industry. This cost does not include the price of losing the forests themselves whose existence and life-sustaining processes are beyond any conceivable monetary value." Read the rest at: http://www.progress.org/progs/wwwboard/messages/2562.html

"WELFARE STATE" FOR THE BETTER OFF: "In the special conditions of capitalism -- the enclosure of land and the rapid increase of a materially progressive population -- this rent grows more rapidly than earnings, making society more and more unequal and unstable. At the same time the pursuit of rent by land monopolisation brings about an unstable economy by artificially high land prices, depressed earnings, and periodic business cycles (as land speculation waxes and wanes). Since [Henry] George's time [died 1897] the welfare state has mitigated those conditions somewhat by a `social wage'. At the same time an immense welfare state for the rich has grown up by countless awards of economic privilege to the wealthy." -- Article "Henry George's Teaching," in Good Government, Sydney, December 1997, p. 2, reproduced at: http://www.multiline.com.au/~georgist/good97dec1.htm


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