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UK-based telecommunications firm Vodafone is to sell its stake in US mobile phone company Verizon netting £84bn (€99.2bn), but none of this will be eligible to be taxed by the British taxman, complains The Independent.

While US tax authorities will claim a £3.2bn slice, Vodafone reports that its US division is owned by a holding company in the Netherlands and so will avoid paying UK tax. Gains from the sale would also appear exempt due to a 2002 law on share sell-offs.

Tax watchdogs claim the company has a “moral duty” to make a contribution following the agreement dubbed “one of the biggest deals in corporate history” by The Independent.