Quote of the day: big accountancy firms have a human rights problem

   0   0 Blog, Enablers and intermediaries, Human Rights
Some people being uncompetitive

Hong Kongers, busy being uncompetitive

From Prem Sikka our quote of the day comes from an article entitled Big accountancy firms have a human rights problem:

“In many other organisations such subversion of the human rights would be considered to be a badge of shame. At major accountancy firms it is increasingly considered to be a sign of business acumen.”

This follows news that the Big Four firms of global accountants clubbed together officially to publish an advertisement denouncing the Hong Kong pro-democracy movement in the name of competitiveness. We are delighted to see now that the South China Morning Post is reporting that Big Four employees have now taken out an advertisement of their own disowning the advertisement.

“You boss, your statement does not represent our stance
. . .
The Chinese words for “you boss” are printed in much bigger characters – the term, in Cantonese, can also mean an expression of anger bordering on vulgarity, hinting at the strong sentiments behind the unusual public comment”

Excellent to hear: excellent.

Sikka’s article looks at the companies’ appalling and explicitly anti-democratic behaviour recently trumpeted by the collective Big Four in Hong Kong, and contains such rotten peaches as this one:

“Last year the Big Four firms became the subject of a hearing by the UK public accounts committee. Just before the hearing the committee received evidence from a former senior PwC employee stating that within the firm the policy was that it would sell a tax avoidance scheme which had only a 25% chance of withstanding a legal challenge. As the committee chairperson put it ‘you are offering schemes to your clients – knowingly marketing these schemes – where you have judged there is a 75% risk of it then being deemed unlawful’. “

And that is, as Sikka reminds us, just the tip of the iceberg.

Related Posts

Is tax avoidance at the heart of Ireland’s economic miracle?

AIB International Finance Centre Dublin - By Estoy Aquí (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia CommonsComing out of the economic crisis Ireland was one of the best performing economies, with GDP growth rates of 8.5% in 2014 and an extraordinary 26.3% in 2015. But how much of this economic activity was real, and how much a fiction created by Ireland’s tax haven status? A new paper by Heike Joebges of the University […]


New Report: HMRC’s “Building our Future” programme

bigben-mcbigbenfaceYesterday the Tax Justice Network was in the UK Parliament to launch a report it co-produced with the Public and Commercial Services Union. The report, entitled “HMRC, Building an Uncertain Future” is a study of HMRC’s (the UK tax authority) reform plans which it is calling “Building our Future”. The report published yesterday analysed the […]


Financial secrecy in football: time for action

bigben-mcbigbenfaceEveryone has known for years that football is rotten to the core and financial secrecy is at the heart of the problem. Why then is no one doing anything about it? This post from the Offshore Game project originally features in the Independent. 


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to Top