The Canada Revenue Agency has alleged Loblaws used Barbados banks and shell companies to dodge millions of dollars in corporate taxes.
In an ongoing court fight, the CRA has documented how Loblaws setup an offshore company, Glenhuron Bank Ltd., and obtained a Barbados banking license.
Using cash funnelled from other parts of its grocery business, Loblaws then used the money to invest in financial derivatives, raking in hundreds of millions of dollars in the process.
Loblaws thought they could avoid paying taxes on this income. But the CRA claims that the income is in fact taxable, and Loblaws may owe Canadians as much as $400 million in unpaid taxes and penalties.
Last year, Loblaws Chairman Galen Weston attacked the minimum wage and the company admitted to fixing bread prices for over a decade. Now it’s revealed they are using offshore banks to avoid paying their fair share of corporate taxes.
Big corporations like Loblaws think they can play by a different set of rules than everyone else. They use their money and influence to rig the system for themselves and their rich owners. And usually they get away with it. We hope this time is different, and the CRA gets back all the money they owe Canadians.