Category: Belgium

E.U., Citing Amazon and Apple, Tells Nations to Collect Tax

BRUSSELS — European competition regulators on Wednesday mounted a push against tax avoidance by Silicon Valley giants, announcing plans to take Ireland to court for failing to collect back taxes from Apple and ordering Luxembourg to claim unpaid taxes from Amazon. The effort, which comes as the European Union considers...

New Dutch Law Leaves Repentant Taxpayers Out in the Cold

The abolition of a scheme allowing Dutch taxpayers to fess up to their tax sins and avoid criminal charges is likely to discourage high-net worth individuals from ever disclosing money hidden abroad to local authorities, practitioners say. Deputy Minister of Finance Eric Wiebes announced that it was time to draw...

A Classic Case Of Double Taxation?

The Central Board of Direct Taxes in India issued Circular Number 41 on December 21, 2016 providing clarifications on applicability of ‘indirect transfer’ provisions under the Indian Income Tax Act, 1961 to investors of Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs) – earlier known as Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) in India. The circular...

Oxfam: Luxembourg, Ireland, Netherlands among worst tax havens

The NGO’s report exposes the worst offenders in the ‘race to the bottom on corporate tax.’ Luxembourg, Ireland, Cyprus, and the Netherlands are among the world’s 10 worst tax havens, despite an ongoing EU crackdown on tax avoidance and profit shifting across the bloc. The findings come in a report...

McDonald’s to scrap Luxembourg tax structure

Fast-food chain’s reorganisation means £800m from restaurants in Europe will flow through the UK instead McDonald’s is to scrap its controversial Luxembourg tax structure in a corporate shakeup that means $1bn (£800m) of income from fast-food restaurants across Europe will flow through the UK instead. The move comes 12 months...

NETHERLANDS ACCUSED OF MAKING MORE SECRET TAX DEALS WITH GLOBAL BUSINESSES

The Netherlands is still making secret tax deals with multinational companies, according to an European report on which Dutch research foundation SOMO worked. The Netherlands remains one of the ost important countries in Europe when it comes to tax evasion, the report states according to ANP. Last year the Netherlands...

Belize Financial Regulator Warns Against Fraudulent Bitcoin Investment Company

The financial regulator of Central American nation Belize has issued a public warning against XMAXBIT, a company that claims to provide returns for investors by investing in cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. Published on Monday, the Office of the International Financial Services Commission (IFSC), Belize’s financial regulator, has warned users against dealing...

Bermuda dodges EU tax-haven blacklist bullet

Bermuda has reportedly avoided being placed on an European Union blacklist after Britain blocked a French-led proposal that would have automatically branded the island a tax haven. Territories with a zero per cent corporate tax rate, such as Bermuda and the Cayman Islands, would have been denounced as potentially “non-co-operative”...

Anti-terrorism tactics should be applied to tax havens, report says

The same aggressive and uncompromising international effort used to combat terrorism must be employed to eliminate tax havens, says Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz in a report being released Tuesday. In a copy of the report, obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and shared with the Star, Stiglitz...

Multinationals still able to use ‘double Irish’ tax arrangement after 2020

Multinational companies will still be able to use the controversial “double Irish” tax arrangement after the final end date of 2020, Sinn Féin MEP Matt Carthy has said. A number of tax experts have confirmed this is the case, though they have disputed whether the terms of which they will...

EU agrees screening process for tax havens, critics cry foul

European Union finance ministers agreed on Tuesday how to screen countries for a blacklist of tax havens across the world, officials said, and said applying zero-rate taxes was not necessarily a factor, prompting an outcry. The bloc committed in May to agree on a common list of tax offenders by...

German chemicals firm BASF avoided nearly €1bn in tax, says report

Network of foreign subsidiaries reported key to €923 million windfall over five years German chemicals manufacturer BASF has been accused of avoiding close to €1 billion of tax. In a report published on Monday, the company is alleged to have used aggressive tax-planning strategies in the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland and...

EU Countries Block Use of Rates as Tax Haven Criteria

A “number” of European Union countries are blocking a push to include zero corporate tax rates as criteria for the bloc’s tax haven blacklist, according to Slovakia, which holds the rotating EU presidency. EU members have been unable to reach an agreement on cracking down on offshore structures aimed at...

OECD Reviewing U.S. Handling of Double-Tax Cases

The OECD has started to review how effectively the U.S. and five other countries handle cases in which multinational companies assert double taxation under the mutual agreement procedure of bilateral tax treaties. As part of the review, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development is inviting multinationals to answer a...

Brussels aims to harmonise corporate tax by 2021

The European Commission has unveiled its latest plan to harmonise corporate tax. After two past failures, the executive hopes the recent flurry of tax scandals will give the project a new lease of life. The EU has revived its tax crusade with a new attempt to establish a Common Consolidated...

Ireland braced for new EU corporate tax plan

A new EU corporate tax proposal could fundamentally change how multinationals pay their tax bills in Ireland. It comes at a sensitive time for the State, following so closely after the commission ruled phone giant Apple tapped illegal tax breaks worth around €13bn. In proposals to be unveiled tomorrow, the...

UN expert urges next UN chief to crack down on Malta and other ‘tax havens’

A United Nations human rights expert has urged the next UN secretary-general to make the elimination of tax havens a priority to ensure that corporations, billionaires and ‘kleptocrats’ pay their fair share of taxes. Speaking on Friday, American law professor Alfred de Zayas also urged Antonio Guterres, who will succeed...

Germany and Panama move closer towards information-sharing agreement

Talks on a data exchange agreement have progressed following Panama President Varela’s state visit to Berlin. Panama is looking to clean up its reputation in the aftermath of the “Panama Papers” leak earlier this year. Germany and Panama moved a step closer towards signing an information-sharing agreement, German Chancellor Angela...

Ukraine and Luxembourg sign a Protocol modifying their double tax treaty

On 30 September 2016 Ukraine signed a protocol (the “Protocol”) modifying the not-yet-in-force Convention between the Government of Ukraine and the Government of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with respect to Taxes on Income and Capital (the “Convention”)....

Civil Society proposes to step up measures to fight money laundering and terrorist financing

EESC debate also calls for safeguards against misuse of data collected An EESC debate this week on fighting money laundering, terrorist financing and tax evasion called for a number of policy proposals aimed at “making the lives of criminals more difficult and their actions impossible”. The Brussels event made a...

EU to black list tax havens, EU Commissioner Moscovisi says

A list on non-cooperative tax jurisdictions around the world, the first ever common EU list, is being under preparation, Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs, Taxation and Customs Pierre Moscovici has said. “This month, we started the process that will lead, by the end of 2017, to the first ever...

European Parliament Begins Panama Papers Probe Despite Tax Haven Splits

Members of the European Parliament, September 27, have begun their investigation into the Panama Papers scandal, which exposed the sheer extent of rich people and companies using offshore tax havens to reduce their tax liabilities in EU member states. However, the latest probe comes on the back of another investigation...

OECD official says EU Apple ruling not precedent for future tax cases

A multi-billion euro back tax bill handed to Apple by the European Commission should not be seen as a precedent for future tax cases as it was based on state aid rather than tax law, the OECD official spearheading global tax reform said on Monday. European Union antitrust regulators last...

EU Commission names countries that may need tax avoidance screening

The European Commission published on Thursday a list of 81 countries and jurisdictions that have a higher chance of facilitating tax avoidance and may be subject to further screening and even sanctions if all EU states agree. The “scoreboard” is the first step in a process that should be concluded...

UK overseas territories could be affected by EU tax crackdown

Eight British overseas territories and crown dependencies, including Jersey, the British Virgin Islands and Cayman Islands, could face EU economic sanctions after Brussels identified them as having low or no corporation tax. Experts have published a scorecard showing red flag warnings set against a list of the 81 countries that...

Luxembourg may be focus of another Brussels tax inquiry

After state aid inquiries into Amazon and McDonald’s, EU looks again at Luxembourg The European Commission may open a fresh investigation into tax rulings offered by Luxembourg as early as this week, as EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager continues her clampdown against corporate tax avoidance. Luxembourg is already awaiting a...

Ireland risks being trampled in US/EU corporate tax fight

For the last three years, the international debate on tax policy was all about consensus. Led by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, countries across the globe agreed that aggressive tax planning by multinational corporations which pushed profits into low-tax countries – or indeed took profits outside the charge...

By singling out Apple over taxes, Brussels is abusing its own rules

Under EU rules it is illegal for countries to give financial help to some companies and not others in a way that distorts fair competition, writes Liza Lovdahl Gormsen. State aid rules were originally designed to protect the internal EU market and avoid retaliation among member states. The US Treasury,...

‘Tax avoidance’ masters revealed: EXCLUSIVE

The “Big Four” global accounting firms – PwC, Deloitte, KPMG and Ernst & Young – are the masterminds of multinational tax avoidance and the architects of tax schemes which cost governments and their taxpayers an estimated $US1 trillion a year, according to an Australian taxation expert. The controversial new claims...

EU agrees anti-tax evasion deal

Brussels (AFP) – The European Union agreed a raft of anti-tax evasion measures Tuesday that would make it harder for multinationals to shift profits to countries with lower taxes, but critics said they were too watered down. The proposals were agreed on provisionally by the EU’s 28 finance ministers on...

European Commission gets closer to agreeing anti-tax avoidance directive

The European Commission is on the brink of agreeing its far-reaching anti-tax avoidance directive, but is waiting on approval of some elements of the package by the Belgian and Czech governments, before it introduces new rules at midnight on Monday 20 June At the end of last week the Commission’s...

Irish corporate tax regime attacked in EU debate

Sinn Fein’s Matt Carthy has launched a stinging attack on Ireland’s corporate tax regime, arguing that Ireland’s reputation as an “enabler of massive tax avoidance for large corporations” is justified. Addressing the European Parliament in Strasbourg on Tuesday, the Midlands-North West MEP criticised the last government’s move to abolish the...

Ireland delays EU corporate tax deal

Ireland has helped delay an EU deal on corporate tax-dodging over fears it could harm the economy. Finance Minister Michael Noonan told his EU counterparts in Brussels he would not sign up to the deal because it affects Ireland’s sovereign right to set tax rates. “We want to make sure...