I haven’t bothered looking at nPower’s accounts yet, and I daresay I shan’t if I follow my usual rigorous research methods. But I am absolutely certain they have avoided billions of pounds of UK corporation tax.
How do I know this? Well I have seen their statement:
In response to the 38degrees campaign – this is not an “accounting scam”. Like almost every company in the UK, our business is financed by a mixture of equity and loan capital – this is standard business practice. We do borrow from our parent company, RWE – this is because the interest rates we pay to RWE Group are the same as, or often lower, than we would pay to a UK bank. This is not only perfectly legal, and something HMRC is fully aware of – it is common practice
This is typical language of tax avoidance: “It’s legal” or “it is common standard practice” or “we’ve invested £5bn in the UK in the past three years” or “tax is not levied on turnover or EBITDA” or other such excuses.
These are exactly the sort of nonsense arguments that I ended on Monday when I declared that the argument that tax avoidance is legal is dead and gone. So you know that something doesn’t fit here. And that is nPower’s illogical arguments.
Do they really think that a group of obviously intelligent and moral individuals such as a Labour MP or 38degrees would just decide to try to whip up a media frenzy like an unprincipled mob without making sure their reasoning about a subject they barely understand was correct? I think not.
That would be moronic.
No, it is clear that not only is nPower guilty of avoidance but, after my historic declaration on Monday, they are acting legally in an illegal manner.
So I expect to see Paul Massara imprisoned by Monday afternoon. The GAAR interim panel has spoken, take him away!