– Michael Erman
BREAKING: NEW YORK (Reuters) – According to a letter sent by the committee’s chairman, Senator Ron Wyden, on Thursday, the investigation into the tax practices of U.S. drugmakers has been expanded to include Amgen Inc.
The Internal Revenue Service of the United States is already scrutinizing Amgen’s business practices, specifically the way the company divides its profits between the United States and Puerto Rico, for tax evasion.
The Internal Revenue Service is demanding more than $10 billion in back taxes and penalties from Amgen, a biotech company based in California.
Oregon Democrat Ron Wyden and his committee have been investigating whether or not big pharmaceutical companies like Amgen, Merck, and AbbVie have been taking advantage of loopholes in the tax law passed by Republicans in 2017.
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He wrote to Amgen CEO Robert Bradway on Thursday, inquiring about the company’s strategies for achieving an effective tax rate of around 12% over the preceding four years. Reuters received a copy of the letter from Wyden’s office.
We can confirm that Chairman Wyden did, in fact, write to Amgen about the company’s tax policies and procedures. “We are reviewing the letter and will respond to the requests for information,” Amgen said.
According to Wyden, although Amgen made the majority of its revenue in the United States last year, only 28% of its pretax income came from American operations.
Amgen’s operations in Puerto Rico are also highlighted in Wyden’s letter. By the end of the month, Senator Wyden wants the company to have provided financial documents and other information to the committee.
In addition, he requested disclosure of any tax agreements the firm has with Puerto Rican authorities, in particular any that might guarantee the firm a 0% tax rate there.
(Reporting and editing by Michael Erman and Alistair Bell)
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