Ahead of last week’s G7 Summit in Cornwall, finance ministers from G7 member nations announced an agreement to set a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15%. The plan, spearheaded by the Joe Biden administration, aims to disincentivise profit-shifting and ensure multinational corporations pay more tax. At Redfield & Wilton Strategies, our latest research reveals that the move enjoys widespread support among the British public.
A majority (64%) of Britons say they would support the introduction of a global minimum corporation tax rate. Only 6% say they would oppose such a measure, with 19% neither supporting nor opposing it.
Support for a global corporate tax is highest among older adults, with strong majorities of 45-to-54-year-olds (67%), 55-to-64-year-olds (70%) and those aged 65 and over (71%) in support of its introduction. Respondents in these age demographics are also more likely to say that global companies generally pay an ‘insignificant’ amount of tax relative to their earnings: most respondents over the age of 45 agree with this statement, compared to around a quarter (26%) of 18-to-24-year-olds. This discrepancy may account for why a somewhat greater proportion of 2019 Conservative voters (54%) than 2019 Labour voters (47%) hold this view.
The introduction of a global minimum corporation tax rate is expected to have a substantial impact on big tech firms, such as Amazon, Facebook and Google. An overwhelming majority (79%) of Britons agree that such tech firms should pay more tax, including 49% who agree strongly with this prospect. Meanwhile, only 4% disagree that such companies should pay more tax.
Again, we see the highest level of agreement among older adults and Conservative voters. In fact, majorities of 55-to-64-year-olds (55%) and those aged 65 and over (60%) strongly agree that big tech firms should pay more tax. Overall, 85% of 2019 Conservative voters agree that such firms should pay more tax, compared to 77% of 2019 Labour voters who hold this view.
Conservative voters are also more likely to see the UK as a leader in the regulation of big tech. When asked to identify the countries demonstrating the most resolve towards regulating and taxing big tech firms, half (50%) are unsure, and equal proportions select the US (23%) and the UK (23%). Yet, 30% of 2019 Conservative voters identify the UK, compared to 20% of 2019 Labour voters, perhaps reflective of a greater faith in the Conservative-run UK Government among the party’s voters.
With the G7’s agreement due to be developed further at next month’s G20 Summit in Venice, our research suggests the British public is broadly in favour of the introduction of a global minimum corporation tax rate. Furthermore, a striking majority of Britons believe that big tech firms should be paying more tax. Interestingly, both of these views are most pronounced among older age demographics and those who voted Conservative in 2019.