Academic warns of the effects of tax avoidance on national economies in new documentary

Posted by ap507 at Jun 16, 2015 12:10 PM |
University of Leicester researcher to appear in ‘The Price We Pay’ making its British premiere at Open City Documentary Festival in London on 19 June

Issued by the University of Leicester Press Office on 16 June 2015

A trailer for The Price We Pay is available at: http://vimeo.com/filmoptionint/trailer-the-price-we-pay-a-documentary-by-harold-crooks

An academic from the University of Leicester is to appear in an upcoming documentary by an award-winning filmmaker, which will make its British premiere at the Open City Documentary Festival in London on 19 June. 

Dr Angus Cameron from the University of Leicester’s School of Management will be featured in The Price We Pay, directed by award-winning filmmaker Harold Crooks, which discusses the social and economic consequences of

‘legal’ corporate tax avoidance, particularly with respect to big banks and the tech giants of the “cloud” economy.

The Price We Pay, which is produced by InformAction Films, first premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) in September 2014, where it received rave reviews from French and Canadian media.

Following the film's release in France - where it has been seen by more than 50,000 cinema goers - French President François Hollande ordered a special screening of the film and called in one of the film’s other contributors, French economist Thomas Piketty, to discuss the issue of tax evasion with French Government Ministers.

Dr Cameron was approached to be involved in the documentary due to his research into the nature, meaning and function of the ‘tax state’ which is increasingly threatened by competition from low or zero-tax jurisdictions such as tax havens.

He said: “The Price We Pay exposes an issue that affects us all. Tax avoidance is not just a matter of a few celebrities or companies behaving badly, but is endemic to the contemporary global economy. Not only does this limit the ability of the state to pay for basic education, healthcare and welfare, it fundamentally alters its relations to its citizens – both individual and corporate.” 

During the documentary Dr Cameron explains how taxation is central to the formation and capacity of the state and its ability to deliver welfare and provide a 'national identity'. He explores how the rise of offshore finance in particular has distorted the meaning and practice of what we regard as being 'national' economies and the welfare state and how it has helped to transform the concept of money itself, which now lies far beyond the control of the state.

Director Harold Crooks co-wrote the narration of the widely acclaimed Sundance-winning documentary The Corporation and wrote and co-directed the feature documentary Surviving Progress, produced by Oscar-winning Cinemagimaire of Montreal.

Mr Crooks said: “Angus Cameron anchors the film in a contemporary reality which allows us to see the connection between the “offshoring” of money and wealth by Global Finance and the withering of the welfare state.”

The Price We Pay will premiere at the Open City Documentary Festival in London on 19 June. It will be available on DVD and Blu-ray later in 2015.

More information about the 19 June premiere can be found here: http://www.opencitylondon.com/films/price-we-pay

View the trailer for The Price We Pay at: http://vimeo.com/filmoptionint/trailer-the-price-we-pay-a-documentary-by-harold-crooks

 ENDS

Notes to editors:

For more information please contact Dr Angus Cameron on awgc1@le.ac.uk

Reviews of The Price We Pay

"The strength of this documentary comes from the quality of personalities who have agreed to participate in the filming ... specialists perfectly aware of the workings of the system.” GILLES BRIDIER, SLATE.FR

“With clarity, precision and admirable brevity, The Price We Pay puts its finger deep into the wound of the … evils at the heart of Europe’s political-economic problems.” - SERGE KAGANSKI, LES INROCKUPTIBLES

“Concise, engrossing and occasionally infuriating… The Price We Pay is a slickly polished product but that in no way diminishes its compelling credibility or its potent impact.” - JOE LEYDEN, VARIETY

“The most important film to date on the complex yet critical issuer of tax in an era of globalisation.” JOHN CHRISTENSEN, DIRECTOR, TAX JUSTICE NETWORK

“Smart, eye-opening and incendiary… A vital exposé of the flagrant ethical bankruptcy endemic to modern capitalism, The Price We Pay is a compelling, coherent and forceful call to action.”    AGATA SMOLUCH DEL SORBO, TORONTO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL

“Praise-worthy for making sense of the arcane subject of corporate taxes.” STEVEN  FRANK, BLOOMBERG

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