Rio Tinto released its third annual tax payment report detailing $11.6 billion the company paid to countries worldwide last year; the survey lists Rio as Australia’s biggest corporate taxpayer. The voluntary report details all individual payments over $1 million made to governments in the countries where the company operates. The majority of taxes were paid in ore-rich Australia, with more than $8.9 billion outlaid to all levels of government, while $1 billion was paid in Canada, $376 million in the U.S., $331 million in Chile, $280 million in Mongolia and $150 million in the U.K.
In addition, the company paid $140 and $130 million in French and South African taxes respectively, among other countries.
The corporate income tax was the largest component of Rio’s tax payments, followed by government royalties and payroll taxes, all with global significance, according to company officials. “Rio Tinto makes significant contributions to public finances in all the countries where we are doing business,” said Rio CFO Guy Elliott. “We believe it is important to disclose this tax information, because this level of transparency helps us to retain our license to operate, promotes government accountability, and plays a key role in combating corruption,” he added in a news release.
Rio, according to Elliott, encourages “a global approach that establishes consistent disclosure that promotes sound tax governance, accountability and transparency.”