Is Deloitte Ripping Off Poor Countries in Africa With This “Tax Strategy”?

There is a single guy going off about this Observer piece on Deloitte's Facebook page, and that's between all the randos cussing the D out for unleashing janky software on certain states' unemployed. It's not a good time for Deloitte, that's for sure:

A global consultancy giant has been accused of advising big business, including UK firms, on how to avoid paying tax in some of Africa's poorest countries.

ActionAid has obtained documentation showing that Deloitte, which employs more than 200,000 people in over 150 countries, has been advising foreign companies on how, by structuring their investments through the tropical island of Mauritius, they can enjoy significant tax advantages.

The charity claims that the strategy could help companies to avoid paying hundreds of millions of dollars in tax. Deloitte insists the strategy is not about tax avoidance and attracts much-needed investment to the countries involved.

According to troll and critic Stephen Barna, Deloitte is "ripping off the poorest people living on the planet." However, according to ActionAid tax policy adviser Toby Quantrill, “This document helps lift the lid on the tax avoidance techniques that are being used to deprive poor countries of hundreds of millions of dollars in tax. These techniques may be legal, but that does not mean they are moral. Tax revenues are desperately needed to meet peoples most basic needs and to move countries away from aid dependency. Big businesses have an important role to play in economic development in poor countries. But they also have to act in a socially responsible way. Deloitte is failing Africa for as long as it continues to advise on tax avoidance strategies in the way they have been doing.”

Deloitte — naturally — adamantly denies it is ripping anyone off. I mean all they are trying to do is save their clients a few bucks, legally, what's so wrong with that?

The documentation in question is included below.

Investing in Africa through Mauritius

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