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Help combat tax avoidance across the world, Christian Aid urges UK Government

February 19 2013 - Commenting before the publication of the Public Accounts Committee’s new report on tax avoidance in the UK, Alex Prats, Christian Aid’s Principal Adviser on Economic Justice, said: ‘Tax avoidance is a major problem across the world and it’s especially devastating for developing countries, which lose billions every year as a result of tax avoidance by multinationals.

‘Their tax authorities also have to contend with multinational companies’ armies of highly-paid accountants and tax lawyers. It’s not a fair fight.

‘The UK could very easily help poor countries start catching up with multinationals by using next month’s Budget to require such firms to reveal the tax avoidance schemes that affect developing countries.

‘The Chancellor has promised action at the G8 and G20. He should also use his power, under bilateral and multilateral treaties, to tell developing countries’ tax authorities about the schemes, and help them recover taxes dodged by British multinationals.’

Christian Aid is part of the Enough Food for Everyone IF… campaign, which is calling for the Budget to include this important reform.

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Notes to Editors:

1. Christian Aid works in some of the world's poorest communities in around 50 countries at any one time. We act where there is great need, regardless of religion, helping people to live a full life, free from poverty. We provide urgent, practical and effective assistance in tackling the root causes of poverty as well as its effects.

2. Christian Aid has a vision, an end to global poverty, and we believe that vision can become a reality. We believe that the underlying causes of poverty were made by, and can be ended by, human action. Our strategy for building the power of us all to end poverty is embodied in a new report ‘Partnership for Change’: http://www.christianaid.org.uk/Images/2012_strategy.pdf

3. Christian Aid is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of more than 130 churches and church-related organisations that work together in humanitarian assistance, advocacy and development. Further details at http://actalliance.org

4. Follow Christian Aid's newswire on Twitter: http://twitter.com/caid_newswire

5. For more information about the work of Christian Aid visit http://www.christianaid.org.uk