U.S. pharmaceutical giant Pfizer (PFE) is trying to dodge an estimated $35 billion in taxes by merging with Ireland-based rival Allergan and shifting its headquarters overseas, a coalition of labor and consumer groups charged Thursday.
In a new report, Americans for Tax Fairness said the New York-based maker of Lipitor, Viagra and other well-known drugs would take advantage of lower tax rates in Ireland while reaping the benefits of having its operations in the U.S. under a $160 billion corporate tax inversion deal announced with Allergan in November.
The transaction is undergoing regulatory reviews even as the Obama Administration has tried to block such deals on grounds that they could undermine the nation’s tax base.
Pfizer is pursuing the Allergan deal in the wake of raising the prices of dozens of prescription drugs by at least 10 times the rate of inflation since 2012, the coalition contended. The group’s members include the AFL-CIO, the American Federation of Teachers and other labor unions, as well as consumer watchdogs like Public Citizen’s Congress Watch.