According to the State run Economic Daily the three are units of the great and mighty Google, although the search engine insists that they paid their taxes correctly.
When asked by Reuters, a SpokesGoogle said that it believe it was and always had been, in full compliance with Chinese tax law.
It is possible that the Chinese are just trying to give Google grief, the outfit is not exactly on the People’s Party Christmas card list after its very public spat last year. Google would love to be up and running in China but finds the country’s censorship rules a problem back home.
The Economic Daily said that the glorious tax authorities of the people had investigated the three units of the evil capitalist imperialist search outfit and had punished them.
The three apparently fiddled their tax returns by presenting false and unjustified claims to the total value of $6 million. It did not say when this all happened.
What will be alarming Google is that it is clearly part of a larger tax sweep of its operations behind the bamboo curtain. The Economic Daily said that other Google businesses were being looked at.
The three accused outfits are Google Information Technology, Google Advertising (Shanghai) and Google Information Technology.
The investigation seems to have arrived soon after Google started moaning that its Gmail service was being blocked by the authorities in such a way to make it look like it was suffering from network problems.
The Chinese denied this and said it was not its fault if Gmail’s network was not up to scratch.
Google is in some hot water over its tax bill in Ireland at the moment. Google pays 20 per cent on its profits in the Emerald Island. But according to the Guardian the outfit is able to claim a huge “administrative expense” that reduces its gross profit from €5.5bn to just €45m. Now Ireland is used to fiddling, but prefers it with people jigging upright. But not since the days of print media came to a close have such brilliant creative writers put so much effort into an expenses form.