British Shareholders Unilever Also Behind Relocation Plan

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The British shareholders of laundry and food group Unilever agreed on Monday to the intended move of the company to the United Kingdom. Holders of 99.5 percent of the shares supported the plan.

 

The company has thus taken a significant step in simplifying the structure.

Unilever now has both a British and a Dutch division and head offices in London and Rotterdam. The Dutch shareholders already agreed in September to the plan to merge the existing head offices in London.

The relocation plan is now expected to be formally implemented at the end of November following the approval of the shareholders.

The proposal by MP Bart Snels provides that shareholders to whom a dividend is paid must pay a “fine” if the company moves to a country where there is no such dividend tax.

Unilever has already announced that the move will not go ahead if the law passes. The United Kingdom has no dividend tax. But the company thinks the proposal violates European agreements and tax treaties. So the preparations for the move will continue as usual for the time being.

The House of Representatives has yet to discuss the GroenLinks law, but the proposal is not without a chance. In addition to the opposition, several coalition parties also see something in the plan.

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