Amazon’s tax to turnover ratio dropped to 0.37% in 2020

The online retailer saw sales rise by more than 51% last year

Amazon saw its tax to turnover ratio fall to 0.37% last year, despite sales rising by more than 51% in the UK.

In comparison, the Centre for Retail Research reported bricks-and-mortar retailers paid around 2.3% of annual retail sales overall in business rates.

The online retailer’s sales for 2020, ending 31 December, rose to around $26.48bn (£19.4bn) up from $17.53bn (£12.77bn) the previous year.

According to retail estate advisors, Altus Group, Amazon’s entire UK estate including fulfilment centres, research and development centres, corporate offices in London, Amazon Lockers, Whole Foods Market stores, and delivery stations, overall business rates liabilities were estimated to be around £71.5m at the start of the financial year.

The government is considering imposing a sales tax on the conglomerate and is committed to reviewing business rates ahead of the annual Spring Budget, according to The Sunday Times

Robert Hayton, UK president of Property Tax at Altus Group, said: “Covid-19 had driven online sales, accelerating the need to address the disparity in tax to turnover ratios.

“On the government’s consultation, Hayton added: “This is simply about fairness and cannot be a tax grab on the overall retail sector. Additional revenue raised would have to be ring fenced.”


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