Leading energy provider, Co-operative Energy, has become the first energy supplier to receive the Fair Tax Mark accreditation. The Fair Tax Mark is the world's first independent accreditation scheme to address the issue of responsible tax and The Midcounties Co-operative, which Co-operative Energy is part of, is one of the first businesses to receive the accreditation.
The Mark, which has been developed by a team of tax justice campaigners and tax experts, shows that a company is making a genuine effort to be open and transparent about its tax affairs and pays the right amount of corporation tax at the right time and in the right place.
The accreditation of the Fair Tax Mark pioneer companies comes at a time when recent polling from the Institute for Business Ethics has found that corporate tax avoidance is now the number one concern of the public when it comes to business conduct. The energy industry has also been embroiled, with the tax practices of a number of Big Six energy providers being called in to question.
Ben Reid, Chief Executive of The Midcounties Co-operative, said: "We launched Co-operative Energy with a pledge to be fair and transparent and to challenge the Big Six to stamp out sharp practices. To be the first energy company in the UK to receive the Fair Tax Mark accreditation demonstrates our commitment to customers that we’re committed to reforming the industry and that we are a socially responsible energy business, paying our fair share of tax and investing in the UK economy.”
Richard Murphy, a tax justice campaigner and one of the founders of the Fair Tax Mark said: "Around the world and here in the UK people are now aware that many big businesses routinely fail to pay the taxes they really owe. What they now want to do is spend their money with those companies who are doing the right thing by seeking to pay the fair tax that they owe in the right place at the right time.
“The Fair Tax Mark is designed to allow consumers to identify those businesses who are paying their fair share of tax. This makes the Mark the next step in the campaign for tax justice."