Thursday, 20 December 2012

Support Your Local Book Shops

Here's a message from the owners of two independent book shops.

We run the Warwick and Kenilworth bookshops, independent retailers which have been a proud part of our local high streets for many years.

As we run into the busy Christmas period, we face unrelenting pressure from huge online retailers, like Amazon, undercutting prices -- and it's pushing businesses like ours to the brink.

But what’s even worse is that Amazon, despite making sales of £2.9 billion in the UK last year, does not pay any UK corporation tax on the profits from those sales.

In our book, that is not a level playing field and leaves independent retailers like us struggling to compete just because we do the right thing.

That's why we've started a petition on calling on Amazon to pay their corporation tax in the UK. Click here to join us.

All Amazon UK book and toy sales are routed through its Luxembourg subsidiary. So when the British public buy goods from Amazon, they are in fact paying a Luxembourg company.

This means Amazon can avoid paying British corporation tax on the profits it makes. Tax experts say if Amazon's total UK sales profits were not funnelled to Luxembourg, it could be paying as much as £100m a year in British corporation tax.

As Independent booksellers, we are happy with competition in the market but believe it should be on level terms and by dodging corporation tax in this way, Amazon start with an unfair advantage.

As they grow bigger it’s inevitable that shops like ours will be under even more pressure. That’s bad for customers, bad for the high street and bad for the UK.

Amazon may be obeying the letter of the law - but they’re certainly not being fair. Recently Starbucks announced that they had caved to public pressure and would look at their tax affairs in the UK. It’s time that Amazon did the same.

We pay our taxes and so should they -- please take a stand with us and tell Amazon to pay their fair share.

Thank you for your support,

Frances and Keith

Warwick & Kenilworth bookshops

PS - The Independent has already picked up on our campaign. Please share this campaign with your friends by forwarding this email or sharing this link:

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