Labour leader says letterbox companies will be tackled

Labour leader Diederik Samsom wants to get tough on multinational companies which set up letter-box firms in the Netherlands to avoid taxes.

‘I don’t like the idea the Netherlands is a tax haven, he said. ‘I think it is a bad idea to levy little tax on companies that don’t do anything here, but just move money along.’ 

‘We are going to tackle this, step by step,’ the MP says in the show, which will be broadcast on Friday evening.


Multinationals such as Apple and Starbucks as well as state-owned French firms and bands like U2 and The Rolling Stones channel some of their activities through the Netherlands in order to reduce their taxes.

According to the Volkskrant, the Dutch non-bank finance sector includes 14,000 letterbox firms located in the Netherlands which have annual turnover of €8,000bn.


Samsom also said he thinks the tax-free status of the royal household should be scrapped.

Adding that he had never met prince Willem-Alexander, the Labour leader said that in his heart, he does not think the position of head of state should be an inherited title. ‘I have never been a very ardent Orange supporter,’ he said.

Earlier stories
Finance ministry denies Starbucks tax secrecy claims
Spanish, Italian, Portuguese firms use Dutch tax route
Research into tax schemes is biased, say critics
Multinationals and French state firms use Dutch tax deals
Starbucks under fire in Britain over Dutch tax deal
EU wants an end to letterbox companies
Letterbox companies largely exempt from tougher rules
The Netherlands is a popular tax haven for FTSE 100 firms
Holland no longer a US tax haven
More tax levied over tax haven income

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