Category: Other

Uber’s NZ tax gap estimated on heels of global taxation reform

Following a meeting of world leaders to finalise global rules on multinational tax avoidance, an alliance of groups has estimated that, in New Zealand alone, Uber avoided $6.4 to $12.8 million in corporate tax in the year 2020. 

The report from the Centre for International Corporate Tax Accountability and Research (CICTAR), FIRST Union and E tū highlights how Uber employs a network of more than 50 Dutch shell companies and uses other tax havens, including Bermuda, Delaware and Singapore to shelter it from paying billions in tax across its global operations. 

“New Zealanders should be concerned about how multinationals like Uber, that rely so heavily on investments in public infrastructure like roads and hospitals, are blatantly shirking their tax obligations,” said CICTAR Principal Analyst Jason Ward. 

“Uber’s estimated tax gap of $6.4 to 12.8 million in 2020 is money that could have been spent staffing hospital wards or training apprentices. Instead, it was squirreled away in Uber’s billion-dollar Dutch tax shelter, which if unchallenged will allow the company to avoid billions in corporate tax as its operations continue to expand.” 

FIRST Union Strategic Project Coordinator Anita Rosentreter said the report highlights the dangerous impact of gig economy firms. 

“Uber’s business combines an exploitative labour model that robs workers of their rights with a global tax structure that robs the public purse of the tax revenue we all rely on to keep our society thriving,” said Rosentreter.  

E tū Director Kirsty McCully warned that if left unchallenged, the expansion of the gig economy would lead to even more workers losing out. 

“More and more app-based multinationals are popping up in Aotearoa and they all look to Uber to see what they can get away with,” said McCully. “We mustn’t let these corporations continue to short-change our country and get away with avoiding their responsibilities – whether to our country or to their workforce.” 

E tū and FIRST Union are taking legal action against Uber, seeking a declaration from the Employment Court that Uber’s workforce are employees rather than independent contractors.  

“This is a matter of principle and it is important to workers everywhere – a massive global corporation like Uber should not get away profiting by denying workers their rights,” said Rosentreter. 

“Businesses operating in New Zealand, as a minimum, must pay tax and respect our laws, like everyone else.” 

The report comes as 137 OECD/G20 countries and jurisdictions this month finalised the Inclusive Framework on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting, aiming to reform international taxation rules and ensure that multinational enterprises pay a fair share of tax wherever they operate. 

The report has been delivered to Ministers David Parker (Revenue), Stuart Nash (Economic Development) and Michael Wood (Workplace Relations). 

The full report can be found here

ENDS 

For more information, contact: 

Jason Ward | Principal Analyst, Centre for International Corporate Tax Accountability and Research (CICTAR) 

Email: [email protected] 
Mobile: +61 (0)488 190 457 

Anita Rosentreter | Strategic Project Coordinator – Transport, Logistics and Manufacturing, FIRST Union 

Email: [email protected] 
Mobile: +64 (0)21 626 094 

Kirsty McCully | Director – Member Led Organising, E tū 

Email: [email protected]  
Mobile: +64 (0)27 204 6354 

National Executive representatives announced

The results are in for the 2021 National Executive elections.

We’re delighted to welcome back two long-serving members of the E tū whānau.

Angelique Kerr – Central region representative

Angelique served as the central region representative on E tū’s National Executive for the last three terms, including chair of the Audit and Risk Committee.

She works as at New Zealand’s Parliamentary Service in executive support and as a researcher.

“I want to continue to focus on ensuring that our union invests more in not only recruiting more members, but also training and empowering our union members to be union leaders in their workplace and communities.

“Our goals as a union are still focussed on growth, reach and capability. We need to continue to grow our union, even during these challenging times.”

Nikki Twine – Southern region representative

Nikki served as the southern region representative on E tū’s National Executive last term. She has been an E tū delegate for 20 years and also sits on the E tū Aviation Industry Council.

Nikki works as cabin crew for Mt Cook Airline.

“I’m driven by a strong belief in fairness for ‘all’, always being approachable, level-headed, and committed to my various E tū roles.

“2020/21 has seen many of us having to rethink, re-evaluate, and restructure our future. Our union continually needs to do the same to stay relevant and modern for our current and future membership without losing focus on our purpose and values: integrity, manaakitanga, aspiration, respect, and accountability.”

Results for other National Executive positions

All other National Executive roles were re-elected unopposed.

North Island vice president

Gadiel Asiata

South Island vice president

Ray Pilley

Northern region representative

Mischelle Moriarty

Returning officer

Christopher Gordon

New collective for aged care workers

E tū members at Radius, BUPA, and Summerset have voted to accept the new collective agreement recently negotiated with their employers.

The new collective agreement is also endorsed by NZNO members.

It delivers:

  • pay rises to household staff,
  • continues the focus on care staff moving up the scales,
  • slowly, but steadily, improves pay and conditions. 

As more New Zealanders come to understand the critical work aged care workers do, E tū will be pushing employers to continue to make improvements around training and safe staffing in the new year.

Auckland: free measles immunisation clinic, 29 June

There is a measles outbreak in Auckland, with more than 126 confirmed cases this year. Don’t be a victim of this highly infectious illness which can be very serious. If you or anyone in your whanau is aged between 1 – 49 years and has not had one MMR vaccination, come get one FREE.

If you think you have measles, stay home and call your doctor or Healthline on 0800 611 116.

  • Date: Saturday 29 June
  • Time: 9.00am to 3.00pm
  • Venue: Waitakere Union Health Centre, Waitakere Hospital grounds, Lincoln Road, Henderson
  • Parking: on site, free
  • Registration (preferred but not essential): https://whoozin.com/FQH-73A-AHAE-9MG3

This free community health initiative is provided by Primary Health Organisations: Comprehensive Care, National Hauora Coalition, ProCare.

Links to measles information: