Unilever is finding growth hard to come by in Europe

Unilever is finding growth hard to come by in Europe

The head of Unilever has reportedly said that the company could withdraw its R&D and manufacturing facilities from the UK, were the country to increase business taxes or regulation.

Emphasising that Unilever is already facing a tougher economic environment as consumer spending comes under pressure, Paul Polman warned tosay (11 February) that an “additional tax or regulatory environment” would make the company’s UK operations “non-competitive”.

“That would be unfortunate for the UK,” he warned in an interview with the Daily Mail.

“We do have choices where we put research laboratories, choices for manufacturing facilities, and choices where we put our senior management,” he said.

"Any responsible businessman needs to continue to assess that within an ever-changing global environment."

If it left the UK, Unilever would be the biggest company to quit the country over the growing tax burden.

The company was unavailable for further comment as just-drinks went to press.