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Business secretary: 'big firms use royalty payments as tax subterfuge'

Business secretary Vince Cable - when asked for his thoughts on what to do about claims firms like Yahoo, Google and Starbucks are in frame for not paying their fair share of UK tax - said a global solution is needed.

Speaking on the Andrew Marr show, he said: "There is nothing more galling to small and medium sized companies than [discovering] they are paying their tax to the British Government and we find these people dodging it.

"Our own tax authorities have got to be very tough about royalty payments, which is where a lot of the subterfuge takes place. But the big question is whether you can get wider global agreement.

"The Chancellor has been talking to the Germans about getting a common approach to tax havens and we have got to do that on a bigger scale."