Starbucks must think the British government is incredibly stupid. This is not necessarily a crazy assumption, but it’s hard to believe that David Cameron is going to abandon his mission to tackle tax-avoidance in Britain by large multinationals just because Starbucks threatens to suspend millions of pounds of investment in Britain, as the Telegraph reports.
Even if Starbucks threatened to pull out of the UK entirely it still wouldn’t be a threat. Obviously, as long as there is a market for coffee chains in Britain, a competitor would simply take their place.
It is time to call Starbucks’ bluff and send them packing. Its troubles are only a sign of things to come for corporate tax avoiders, as George Osborne, Britain’s chancellor of the exchequer is likely to find the G8 countries receptive to the idea of a war on tax havens, given the state of their finances.
Something tells me though that Starbucks won’t abandon the UK market to the competition, come hell or high water.