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Friday, February 27, 2009

Not So Beautiful Day: Bono "Hurt" by Criticism of His Move From Ireland to Avoid Tax on Music Royalties

Beautiful_Day Irish Times:  Bono "Hurt" by Criticism of U2 Move to Netherlands to Cut Tax, by Brian Boyd:

U2 singer Bono says he was “stung” and “hurt” by criticism of the band moving part of its business to the Netherlands to lessen its tax burden. ...

U2’s move was criticised by politicians and some development groups. “We pay millions and millions of dollars in tax. The thing that stung us [about the criticism] was the accusation of hypocrisy for my work as an activist,” the singer says. ...

As an activist who has access to world leaders, Bono has called for the developed world to lighten Africa’s debt burden, combat poverty, promote fair trade and increase funds in the battle against Africa’s Aids pandemic. His work has been recognised by three nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize and a “Nobel Man of Peace” prize. Two years ago the singer was awarded a knighthood in the British honours list.

Speaking about a Christian Aid report from two years ago which criticised him for “tax avoidance”, the singer says: “It hurts when the criticism comes in internationally. But I can’t speak up without betraying my relationship with the band – so you take the shit. People who don’t know our music – it’s very easy for them to take a position on us – they run with the stereotypes and caricature of us.”

(Hat Tip:  Tax Justice Network.)  Prior TaxProf Blog coverage:

http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2009/02/not-so-beautful-day-bono-hurt-.html

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