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Accenture switches tax havens

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Accenture, the outsourcing giant, is switching its accounting base from Bermuda to Ireland, amid growing policial hostility towards tax havens and tax avoidance.

Announcing the move on Tuesday, Accenture said it does not expect any impact on its financial results or tax treatment.

Accenture chairman William Green said: "A member of the European Union, Ireland offers a sophisticated, well-developed corporate, legal and regulatory environment.

"It also has a long history of international investment and long-established commercial relationships, trade agreements and tax treaties with European Union member states, the United States and other countries around the world where Accenture does business."

The Obama administration is set to bring in laws to clamp down on avoidance, which is prompting many large firms to look to sympathetic tax regimes in Europe. In its regulatory filing, Accenture said the new laws had in part motivated its flight from Bermuda.

Unlike Bermuda, Ireland has tax treaties with the US, which Accenture believes will bring it "economic benefits" as the new rules bite.

Ireland, which has long sought to attract technology firms with tax breaks, is expected to benefit from the US clampdown, along with Switzerland. ®

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