Search

Barking MP defends family firm’s tax bill on day she grills companies

11:26 13 November 2012

Shareholder: Margaret Hodge has shares in the British steel trading company Stemcor founded by her father

Shareholder: Margaret Hodge has shares in the British steel trading company Stemcor founded by her father

PA Wire/Press Association Images

An MP who heads a parliamentary spending watchdog defended herself yesterday after it emerged a company she has shares in paid just 0.25 per cent in UK tax.

Margaret Hodge stood by the steel trading company that her father founded, Stemcor, which paid £157,000 in UK levies on global profits of £65million last year.

The chairman of the Commons public accounts committee spoke out on the day she quizzed multi-national companies like Starbucks about tax avoidance.

The Labour MP for Barking said: “My committee has been doing a lot of high-profile work on tax avoidance recently so it’s only natural that people should ask these questions.

“All I can say to you is that I condemn tax avoidance of any kind by anyone. I have always believed that the rich, whether individuals or corporations, should pay their fair share of tax.

“I have been repeatedly assured that my family’s company does not engage in tax avoidance of any kind.

“If it were to be proved otherwise, I would have been misled. I would feel extremely angry and let down.

“But I simply cannot believe that they would mislead me in that way, so I am confident that they are doing the right thing.”

She spoke in defence of Stemcor after a national newspaper questioned her holdings in the steel company launched by her father Hans Oppenheimer, and which is now run by her brother Ralph Oppenheimer.

Stemcor confirmed it had “reduced” tax payments of £157,000 last year because it made a loss in the UK.

But the trading company insisted it complied with international tax regulations and stressed it had paid £27m in UK corporation tax in the last five years, which is equivalent to a third of its UK profits.

A spokesman said: “Last year we made £65m pre-tax global profit on £6.3billion global turnover. However, the profits were made outside the UK and the majority of those profits have been taxed at a higher rate in those countries than the current UK corporation tax rate.

“In the UK, we incurred a loss in 2011 due to difficult trading conditions, which squeezed margins and reduced our tax payments compared to prior years. As required by tax rules, Stemcor pays tax where profits are made.”

0 comments

Latest Barking and Dagenham News Stories

18:30

The Nigerian flag was raised outside Barking Town Hall this afternoon to celebrate 56 years since the country’s independence.

15:00

Hope was at the core of a taboo-busting series of short films created by and for young women.

12:06

Five kittens were found abandoned and soaked through in a rucksack yesterday afternoon.

A cutting-edge artist who has shown her work at the Saatchi gallery has opened her own exhibition space in Barking.

Yesterday, 18:30

Broadway Theatre will be closed throughout October as it continues to recover from an explosion.

Yesterday, 15:00

“Exceptional” academic talent was honoured at Barking town hall.

Yesterday, 12:24

A beloved comedy actor has urged people to dig deep to honour “Barking’s best”.

Yesterday, 11:03

The borough’s largest college is considering plans to merge with a second further education institution.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Barking and Dagenham Post
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now