MPs grill Google bosses over UK tax deal

Google Boss Grilled About Pay in Tax Row Hearing

Google's controversial tax deal with HM Revenue and Customs will be thrust back under the spotlight its bosses and tax chiefs are grilled by MPs.

The internet giant has agreed to pay £130 million in back taxes covering the last decade in a deal hailed as a "victory" by Chancellor George Osborne.

Critics, however, claim the firm was effectively paying just 3% tax and have called for the arrangement to be investigated by the National Audit Office and the European Commission.

In the latest session examining tax avoidance by well-known multinationals, the Commons public accounts committee will question Matt Brittin, president of Google Europe, Middle East and Africa and Tom Hutchinson, vice president of Google Inc.

Giving evidence for HMRC will be is outgoing chief Dame Lin Homer, director general of business tax Jim Harra and Edward Troup, tax assurance commissioner.

Labour called for "full transparency of all links" between the Government and Google after it was revealed the firm recently held a free training session for Whitehall media professionals.

The Sun said the latest such initiative took place at the tech firm's London HQ last week despite the row over the tax deal.

A Cabinet Office spokesman told the newspaper: "Eighteen members of the Government Communications Service attended a half-day seminar on digital media at Google's headquarters last week. There was no cost to the taxpayer."

Shadow minister without portfolio Jonathan Ashworth said: "We already know of the close links between ministers and Google, but this is evidence of the cosy relationship between the company and Government and raises serious questions.

"It is now time we have full transparency of all links and meetings between the Government and Google."