Former Microsoft Head Bill Gates argued on Tuesday that tech giants are not in a position to contribute more taxes to state economies if there are not legal safeguards urging them to do so. The philanthropist Mr. Gates argued that he was personally adhering to the letter and spirit of law, having contributed more than $10 billion in tax schemes, even though he admitted the value of his taxations could have been higher under a more progressive tax regime.
Mr. Gates’ opinions are disseminated at a time when debates have sparkled across Europe, the U.S. and elsewhere over the actual contribution of internet conglomerates to actual economies. Mega corporations like Amazon, Facebook and Google have been globally hit at their tax avoidance practices which may fulfil the letter but not the spirit of law. High street shop representatives also accuse their virtual counterparts of unfair competition schemes, as they contribute more taxes in overall than these firms combined.
Over this issue, the Microsoft leader sustained that internet companies have to be distinguished between law abiders and offenders. Even though morality does come into the equation, law abiding companies could possibly contribute more if the current legal system embraced a more progressive taxation schemes, increasing the percentage of contributions made by super-wealthy conglomerates as opposed to poorer citizens. However, this requires both social acceptance and strong political motion on a global scale. For Mr. Gates therefore, the most concrete solution today is to throw the book at tax offenders, requiring in full compensation for their wrongdoings.