The former chief executive of Sainsbury’s has urged government authorities to “make Amazon pay fair share of tax”.
Justin King, who was at the helm of the Big 4 retailer for a decade before stepping down in 2014, told Sky News that the British tax system needed to be overhauled to prevent online companies like Amazon from having “an unfair advantage”.
His remarks follow revelations that despite doubling its profits, Amazon paid £2.8 million less in UK corporation tax in 2017.
According to accounts filed at Companies House, Amazon UK Services Limited incurred £4.6 million in UK corporation tax in 2017, compared to the 2016 figure of £7.4 million.
However, after deferring £2.9 million, the online retail giant only paid £1.7 million in tax.
King said businesses rates needed to be halved with the lost revenue to be replaced by a two per cent increase in VAT.
He said this would not increase shop prices, but would mean online businesses such as Amazon paying a fairer share of tax.
He also suggested that the government look at the possibility of imposing a “delivery tax” on online retailers that “bypass retail space”.