Showing posts with label Tesco. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tesco. Show all posts

Friday, December 05, 2008

poverty wages

Ever wondered why buying new often worked out cheaper than buying at charity shops ?

Foreign workers making clothes for high street fashion chain Primark are existing on as little as 7p an hour . The report also claims workers making clothes for Asda and Tesco are paid similar amounts. The anti-poverty charity War on Want also said Primark was ignoring the rise in basic living costs in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka, leaving workers worse off than they were two years ago.

Workers claimed they needed the equivalent of £44.82 a month to feed their families and pay for clean water, shelter, clothes, education , health care and transport. War on Want said the average worker earned £19.16 a month, with the majority living in small, crowded shacks, many lacking plumbing and adequate washing facilities.

War on Want campaigns and policy director Ruth Tanner said: "Primark, Asda and Tesco promise a living wage for their garment makers. But workers are actually worse off than when we exposed their exploitation two years ago."

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

We are not slaves

There are those who decry migrant workers because of the fact that capitalists use imported labour to lower wages and it canot be denied that inded some employers do use that tactic . But Socialist Courier has always said that the way to fight this is not by imposing immigration bans on workers from abroad but by engaging in class struggle here in the work places to stop this exploitation of foreign workers .

Gleaned from the Polish mainstream press and reported at the Anarkismo website is this story .

Radoslaw Sawicki came to Ireland seven months ago. Grafton recruitment agency offered him work carrying boxes of goods in Tesco's largest warehouse in Dublin. The wage: 9.52 euros per hour, or about 360 euros a week.

Sawicki quickly realised that Irish people working in the same job, but employed by Tesco and not by the agency as the foreigners were, earn at least 200 euros a week more. Poles also did not receive bonuses or additions although their work quotas were continually raised. At the beginning Sawicki carried 500 boxes a shift. Lately that number has doubled (i.e. several tonnes per day). When he and several colleagues complained to the shift manager they were told: "if you don't like it you can go home: there are others willing to take your place."

The next day he came to work wearing a shirt reading [in English] "We are picking 800. No more."

"We will defend ourselves. We are not slaves," adds Sawicki.

Now Poles, with the support of the unions, are fighting for the warehouse to treat them like their own workers.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Tesco move to the Cayman Islands

Tesco has created an elaborate corporate structure involving offshore tax havens which enables it to avoid paying what could be up to £1bn of tax on profits from the sale of its UK properties. The complex new structures uncovered by a six-month Guardian investigation include a string of Cayman Island companies. These are being used by the supermarket giant as it proceeds with its announced programme to sell and lease back £6bn worth of its UK stores.
The stores are being sold to external investors providing Tesco with a big one-off gain which, ordinarily, would be liable to tax, while allowing it to remain in the stores and pay rent to the new owners. The first two deals, worth £445m and £650m, have already used the companies set up in the Cayman Islands - where the rate of corporation tax is zero - allowing Tesco to avoid tax on about £500m profit. Large corporations are increasingly developing strategies to cut tax bills and Tesco is not alone in its tax planning.
The Guardian's analysis of Tesco's accounts over the past five years also shows that the company has paid an effective tax rate of just over 20% on the rest of its profits, at a time when the UK corporation tax rate is 30%.

The investigation has found:
· New company structures set up by Tesco to own stores that are being sold and leased back mean that 99.9% of the company that owns the stores could end up being held offshore. Tesco would be liable to pay UK tax on only the 0.1% of its profit on the sale of the stores held in the UK. Tesco's first two property deals, worth about £1bn, have used this structure and will avoid tax on £500m of profits.
· Although its accounts for the past five years report an average rate of corporation tax of 29%, the actual rate of tax Tesco paid, according to its cash flow statement, is closer to 20%. This is on profits separate from the property deals. UK corporation tax is 30%.
· Tesco has sold its 37 stores in the first two sale and leaseback deals at twice the book value that is included in its accounts, making a profit of about £500m on the £1bn of stores sold. If it achieves the same rate of return on all its disposals as expected, its share of profits from property sales would come to about £3bn. The UK corporation tax due on this would be as high as £1bn, but the retailer could avoid paying this because of its offshore structure.
· A string of other company structures leading to the Cayman Islands have been set up and more of Tesco's properties have already been transferred to them so that they could be quickly activated for the next tranche of store sales.

Tesco Red (GP), which acted as general partner in the £445 million sale-and-leaseback partnership with the British Airways pension funds did indeed pay UK tax on its share of income from ongoing business after the deal. Tesco Red (GP)'s UK income for the period to February 28 2007 was just a measly £832 and its UK tax bill was £494.

Tesco claim since they pay corporation tax, business rates, employer's national insurance contributions and other taxes. Combined with the approximately £750m of PAYE tax, employee's NIC and net VAT that we collected in that financial year, this means they are in the top 10 taxpayers in the UK. We wonder how their rival supermarkets and competitors feel - or are they up to the same tax avoidance [ tax avoidance rather than tax evasion or tax cheating, of course ]



Nearly a third of the UK's 700 largest businesses paid no corporation tax in the year 2005-6. A further third paid less than £10m each, according to figures from the National Audit Office released last year.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Tesco - greedy , miserly and indifferent

Tesco at its AGM today had Ben Birnberg, company secretary for the anti-poverty charity War on Want, put forward a resolution calling for Tesco's supplier factories to undergo independent auditing to ensure decent pay and conditions for developing world workers.

Birnberg, however, said Tesco's opposition to the resolution reflected badly on the top retailer.'There's nothing that lowers a company in the estimation of right thinking people than a public display of executive greed in the affluent world going hand-in-hand with a public display of corporate miserliness and indifference to those at the bottom in an impoverished world, who contribute so magnificently to corporate wealth,'

Garment workers in Bangladesh, the majority of them women, were being paid just 5 pence an hour and regularly worked 80 hours a week to make cheap clothes for Britain's largest retailer, Birnberg said. His resolution called on Tesco to take appropriate measures, independently audited, to ensure workers in the developing world are guaranteed decent working conditions, a living wage, job security, freedom of association and collective bargaining including the right to join a trade union.

'The irony of the board recommending shareholders vote against our resolution to increase the meagre pay of its outsourced workers while recommending they vote for an incentive plans which will augment the already absurdly generous re-numeration packages of its top executives -- boosting the chief executive's take-home pay by up to £11.5 million on top of last year's £4.62 million-- may be lost on the board..." said Susan Seymour of the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Rich Pickings


Socialist Courier once more exposes the exhorbitant awards that members of the capitalist class award themselves .


Cable and Wireless announced a bonus scheme for its part-time chairman Richard Lapthorne that it is worth nearly £11 million . The telecoms company plans to offer Mr Lapthorne a three-year, performance-related incentive scheme that could result in him receiving 5.5 million C and W shares in 2010. At today's market price, the shares would be worth about £10.9 million to Mr Lapthorne, who typically puts in two to three days work a week at the company.


It comes just 12 months after the company launched a long-term incentive plan worth up to £220 million to 60 senior managers.Last year's plan is potentially worth about £18 million each to John Pluthero and Harris Jones, the group managing directors who respectively control C and W's UK and international businesses.


The Communication Workers Union stated:- "Is there no limit to Mr Lapthorne's cheek and to shareholders' gullibility ? Last year, they agreed to a huge reward system for top executives to deliver a programme they had failed to deliver the previous year. Now they've got to pay Mr Lapthorne an additional £10m to do his job enthusiastically."


Last week , Tesco , the supermarket group , said it would award Sir Terry Leahy, its chief executive, shares worth more than £11 million if his plans for expansion in the US proved successful.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Tesco drivers' strike

Tesco drivers' strike continues
Up to 150 Tesco lorry drivers have begun a strike after refusing to sign up to new working terms and conditions.

The dispute came after the supermarket chain revealed plans to move its depot in Livingston, West Lothian, to a new site nearby.

Local MP Jim Devine has called for a one-day boycott of Tesco for threatening to sack drivers who refuse to sign the new contract.

A Tesco spokesman said the chain "strongly refuted" Mr Devine's claims.

The drivers, all members of the Transport and General Workers Union (T&G), are taking part in a strike which is due to last from Thursday until Saturday.

Tesco vehicles were having to turn around at the warehouse as workers formed a picket line, according to union members.

The T&G claims the new contracts, brought in with the move to the new site, mean losses to the drivers of between £3,000 and £6,000 and the de-recognition of the union.


Tesco strongly refuted claims that the drivers would lose any earnings under the new conditions.

The T&G, now part of the Unite union, said drivers voted by 126 to six to strike.

Ron Webb, the T&G's national transport secretary, said: "We said we'd fight back against the way our members were being treated and that fight has begun.

"We are determined to expose this company for the arrogant way it has treated its staff, our members, and the union itself."

He said Tesco had stepped up security in the area.


A strike involving almost 150 Tesco delivery drivers enters its second day on Friday, with no sign of a settlement between the workers and supermarket giant.

Drivers at the Livingston depot in West Lothian walked out after midnight on Thursday over proposed changes to their contracts.

Members of the Transport and General Workers' Union (T&G) formed a picket line at the site, claiming to have turned away several lorries.


Monday, April 16, 2007

Tesco check-out


Going shopping ?? Getting the groceries ??


The UK's biggest supermarket chain, Tesco, will smash its own national record this week when it unveils annual profits totalling more than £2.5bn, or close to £5,000 profit every minute.


Tesco business sales up from £39.4bn a year ago to an expected £42.7bn - more than the GDP of Peru.


Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy has been named the most influential unelected person in the UK by a Guardian Unlimited panel .

One of the panel, Isobel Larkin of the TUC , said, "His future influence and actions on the effects of climate change, globalisation of the UK workforce, ethical trading and suppliers who employ vulnerable workers will be critical in determining whether his nomination is as a force for good or ill."


A reminder that it is Capitalism and the capitalists need to accumulate and accumulate that is the driving force in to-day's society and the striving for profits that determine the nature and future of the world ... unless , of course , we change the system .

Summer School

Summer School 2017

Summer School 2017  21st – 23rd July Fircroft College, Birmingham   These days, con...