More than one in four of Britain's biggest companies do not pay any corporation tax, and many are using tax avoidance measures to get round the rules.
That is the shocking conclusion of a House of Commons report published this week.
A host of 'tax advisors' have invented ever more imaginative schemes to help large companies slash their bills, the watchdog warns.
These methods include British-based companies transferring their assets to low-tax countries and paying tax there.
The report concludes that the Revenue & Customs (HMRC) tax collectors, who are supposed to act against illegal scams, are under resourced and poorly trained.
The government says it is determined to claw back its lost money. It is a pity then that in recent years it has cut thousands of HMRC jobs.