Category: Russia

Follow the money

As countries share more information, opportunities to squirrel away cash abroad will continue to narrow AMONG the sins that have most angered the austerity-weary everywhere is the use of undeclared offshore accounts to stash the wealth of the rich. Greeks were particularly enraged when data stolen from Swiss banks showed… – Continue reading

Legal flash Shanghai – 2014 special edition – Update on tax regulations 2014

In 2014, China continued to develop its taxation system affecting domestic and crossborder transactions. This “Legal Flash – Special Edition 2014” highlights the most significant tax updates of the year. Please see our monthly legal flashes for more information and analysis here. Taking a step-forward on anti-avoidance provisions, the State… – Continue reading

3 IRS Strikes? FATCA, FBARs, An ‘Abode’ In U.S. Although You Live Abroad

With over 7 million Americans living abroad, many have complained about the rigorous IRS enforcement of global tax reporting, the risk of draconian FBAR penalties for reporting foreign accounts, and FATCA discrimination. FATCA, America’s global tax enforcement law, applies virtually everywhere. It is easy for the IRS to find you,… – Continue reading

London: ‘a global haven for criminal financial activity’

London is a global haven for criminal financial activity – with billions of pounds laundered through British banks each day, according to the head of the UK’s National Crime Agency. “Many hundreds of billions of pounds of criminal money is almost certainly laundered through UK banks and their subsidiaries each… – Continue reading

Tax cafe: The FATCA conundrum deepens for India

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) is a new chapter in the US Internal Revenue Code. Chapter 4 was added by the Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act. It seeks to identify US taxpayers having accounts at foreign financial institutions (FFIs) and attempts to enforce reporting of those… – Continue reading

Putin Uses Tax Reform To Coerce Oligarchs Into Repatriating Assets

President Vladimir Putin is pushing harder on Russia’s richest citizens to repatriate offshore assets amid a slump in the ruble and the imposition of sanctions by the US and the European Union, The Business Times said. Under new tax rules signed into law by a presidential decree in November, Russian… – Continue reading

Swiss banks target Israeli tax evaders

Swiss banks are training their crosshairs on Israeli customers. Legal sources said that in the past two weeks, the large banks in Switzerland have begun sending many queries to their Israeli customers demanding confirmation either that the assets deposited with the banks were reported to the Israeli tax authorities, or… – Continue reading

Asia to test bond record again in 2015

[HONG KONG] Asia could set another record for international bond issues in 2015 if Chinese companies continue to borrow offshore at the same voracious pace they did this year, while bankers expect a heavy redemption schedule and larger pipelines from India and Indonesia to lift activity. Barclays is forecasting volumes… – Continue reading

News Round Up

Currently, there is a tendency among those who take an interest in international tax developments to look to the future and try to guess how the international tax landscape will look in, say, three of four years, once countries begin to implement the OECD’s base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS)… – Continue reading

Volume of controlled transfer pricing deals in 2013 comes to UAH 1.142 trl – fiscal service

The total number of reports on controlled transfer pricing operations, received by the State Fiscal Service of Ukraine, as of October 1, 2014 exceeded 2,500. The head of the department for transfer pricing inspections at the Fiscal Service, Mykola Mishin, said at the round table “Transfer pricing in Ukraine: problems… – Continue reading

Billionaire Usmanov transfers key assets to Russian jurisdiction

“These measures were taken in line with the policy announced by President Vladimir Putin for the Russian economy’s de-offshorization,” USM Holdings owned by billionaire Alisher Usmanov said MOSCOW, December 19. /TASS/. USM Holdings owned by billionaire Alisher Usmanov is transferring key assets to Russian holding companies, USM said in a… – Continue reading

Leading financial centres ‘must act on corruption’, says watchdog

China and Turkey have fallen in international rankings of perceived corruption, according to a new report released by the Berlin-based anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International (TI).09 Dec 2014 Regulatory Europe Asia Pacific Gulf Africa According to the latest edition of TI’s Corruption Perceptions Index for 2014, which scores countries on a… – Continue reading

Putin declares amnesty for returning capital, tax breaks for small business

In his annual address to both houses of parliament, President Vladimir Putin announced a large-scale program for the liberalization of the Russian economy. In particular, he proposed an amnesty for the repatriation of offshore capital and tax breaks for small businesses. However, Russian experts point out that some of the… – Continue reading

Putin welcomes billionaires back to Russia – but will they come?

President Putin’s surprise amnesty allowing Russians with cash stashed abroad to bring it back home with no penalty may be a windfall, but then maybe not. The US, Mexico, Italy, Kazakhstan, and many others have tried it with varied success. When financial crises hit, governments have tried to reel in… – Continue reading

Two Years of Magnitsky Act: Facts and Details

The factbox devoted to two years of the so-called Magnitsky Act passed by US Senate. This act allows Washington to deny visas and freeze assets of Russian officials allegedly involved in the death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. Five years ago, on November 16, 2009, Sergei Magnitsky, a tax and… – Continue reading

Russian Federation: How To Reduce The Risk Of Criminal Liability For Tax Evasion

Business people often believe that the only consequence of a tax offence will be the claim for the outstanding (non-paid) taxes and administrative penalties. The issue of potential criminal liability of the chief executive officer is usually disregarded. This may be a serious mistake of the affected company and its… – Continue reading

UPDATE 1–Russia’s Sistema to review portfolio after “challenging” year

* Sistema’s Q3 net income down 71.5 percent * CEO says reporting period “most challenging” (Recasts, adds detail, CEO quotes) Nov 27 (Reuters) – Russian conglomerate Sistema is reviewing its costs, portfolio of investments and future plans, it said on Thursday, after a drop in profits and a “challenging” year… – Continue reading

Russia Enacts Russian CFC Bill

On November 18, 2014, the Lower House of Russia’s Parliament, the State Duma, approved at second and third readings Bill No. 630365-6, which would introduce a new controlled foreign corporation (CFC) regime in the country. The new CFC regime contained in the Bill has an anti-offshore orientation and would give… – Continue reading

Action needed to soften impact from Russia tax law

THE Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Cyprus (ICPAC) said that action is needed to mitigate the impact on the local financial services sector from a recent Russian law cracking down on Russian offshore business. Speaking at a press conference in Nicosia, ICPAC chairman Yiannis Charilaou said however that the… – Continue reading

Accountants cheer the UK and the Netherlands for simple tax rules

European tax experts say that despite rule changes, Britain has one of the clearest systems Tax professionals view the Netherlands and the UK as the most attractive European countries in which to do business, according to a new survey. The two countries scored well on how simple their tax rules… – Continue reading

Putin signs anti-offshore law to return Russian capital from foreign tax shelters

The law introduces amendments to the country’s tax code that will oblige Russian owners of companies registered in offshore tax havens to pay taxes in Russia MOSCOW, November 25. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed on Tuesday a new tax law intended to return Russian capital and assets from foreign… – Continue reading

Russia Cracks Down On Offshore Tax Havens

MOSCOW — There is nothing new about offshore tax shelters. In ancient Athens, after the government decided to levy a 2% tax on all trade operations, merchants started avoiding the city, conducting business on the surrounding islands instead. Those Greek islands became the first offshore tax havens. The current offshore… – Continue reading

Russia’s parliament approves anti-offshore legislation

MOSCOW, November 19. /TASS/. The Federation Council, the upper house of Russia’s parliament, approved a new tax law on Wednesday as part of President Vladimir Putin’s “deoffshorization” initiative designed to return Russian capital and assets from foreign jurisdictions. The law introduces amendments to the country’s tax code that will oblige… – Continue reading

‘Anti-offshore’ law to bring billions back to Russian economy

Russia’s upper house of parliament has approved an “anti-offshore” law requiring individual and corporate taxpayers to report foreign profits. The Russian government aims to prevent capital outflow via “offshores,” estimated at $200 billion in 2014. The law requires Russian tax authorities to be notified of all foreign dealings. The government… – Continue reading

Inflation, Offshore Tax Law, Rostelecom: Business in Brief

Russia’s Putin Urges Action to Restrain Rising Interest Rates, Inflation President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday urged Russia’s government and the Central Bank to work together to curb interest rates and restrain surging inflation as the economy slides toward recession. “Only combined efforts by the government and Central bank and a… – Continue reading

G-20 leaders agree on $2 trillion boost to growth

BRISBANE, Australia — Under pressure to jolt the lethargic world economy back to life, leaders of G-20 nations on Sunday finalized a plan to boost global GDP by more than $2 trillion over five years. The fanfare, however, was overshadowed by tensions between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Western leaders…. – Continue reading

New Russian tax law to clamp down on offshore tax schemes

In March 2014 the Russian Ministry of Finance published a draft anti-offshore law which is currently submitted for consideration by The State Duma (parliament) with the decision expected to be made by the end of 2014. Russia is aiming to clamp down on the use of foreign offshore tax shelters… – Continue reading

Russia is about to adopt anti-offshore measures

MOSCOW, November 10. /TASS/. Russia is speeding towards the adoption of anti-offshore legislation. The State Duma (lower house of parliament) on Tuesday will hold the first reading of amendments to the Tax Code obliging both individuals and legal entities to notify the authorities of their foreign properties and profits. This… – Continue reading

Russia ratifies OECD Convention on administrative assistance in tax matters

The parties to the Convention will render each other administrative assistance in exchanging information, conducting simultaneous tax inspections, recovering tax claims and taking conservancy measures MOSCOW, November 5. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law on ratifying the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters, according to… – Continue reading

Russia’s Economic Development Ministry slams ‘deoffshorization’ approach

MOSCOW, October 28 (RAPSI) – Russia’s Economic Development Ministry claims that mandatory ‘deoffshorization’ aimed at moving business activities of Russian companies from offshores back to the country entails considerable risks for the companies and the slowing economy of the country, Interfax reported on Tuesday, citing a letter sent to the… – Continue reading

Russian government approves law to clamp down on offshore tax sheltering

(Reuters) – Russia’s government has approved a new tax law to clamp down on Russian companies and individuals using offshore tax shelters. The law is part of a range of measures initiated by President Vladimir Putin, and collectively known as “deoffshorisation”, which are aimed at bringing Russian businesses and money… – Continue reading

WHO Meets Behind Closed Doors, Threatens A Global Tax Hike

The sovereignty of individual nations is increasingly under threat from international governance bodies that want to force a range of new regional and international taxes on states. The latest attempt to bypass state sovereignty occurred when the World Health Organization (WHO) met behind closed doors in Moscow last week. In… – Continue reading

Dirty money: 19 UK firms alleged ‘complicit’ in $20bn laundering scam

Some 19 British firms are at the center of an investigation into in a mammoth global money-laundering operation. The scheme was allegedly contrived to make $20bn (£12.5bn) worth of ill-gotten gains appear legitimate. The illicit funds are thought to have originated from criminal gangs and corrupt officials across the globe,… – Continue reading

Global Residence and Citizenship Council Announced

TORONTO, Oct. 10, 2014 /CNW/ – The Global Citizen Forum 2014, hosted in Toronto, proved to be a launch platform for significant initiatives. On October 3, 2014, its second day, in front of more than 260 delegates, Mykolas Rambus, CEO, Wealth-X, announced the establishment of the Global Residence and Citizenship… – Continue reading

Prosecutors investigate EUR 200 mln tax evasion & money laundry case at Lukoil’s Romanian refinery

Romanian prosecutors from the Ploiesti Court of Appeal Prosecutor’s Office conducted several searches at the Petrotel refinery in Ploiesti, which is owned by Russian group Lukoil. The searches are part of a tax evasion and money laundering case in which the damage to the state is about EUR 200 million,… – Continue reading

B2B: Transfer Pricing

Three years ago, Russia adopted new transfer pricing legislation. The new rules became effective on  Jan. 1, 2012. They are in line with international standards (OECD Guidelines on Transfer Pricing), but their concept was, and still is, quite new for the Russian tax authorities. Thus the rules provide for a transition period until 2017: For the years 2012… – Continue reading

B2B: Bilateral Advance Pricing Agreements Are a Useful Tool for Attracting Foreign Investors

In recent years, Russian tax legislation has adopted many modern international tax concepts and practices. Most notably, transfer pricing rules, consolidated groups of taxpayers, easy electronic communications between taxpayers and tax authorities have all become part of standard working practice. However, there is always room for improvement. The current global economic and political situation dictates that new initiatives… – Continue reading

‘Deoffshorisation’ of the Russian Economy: Updated version of the Draft Law on Controlled Foreign Company legislation and other measures

The Russian Ministry of Finance has published an updated version of the draft controlled foreign company rules (hereinafter – “CFC”) on the 2nd of September (hereinafter – ‘the new Draft’). The previous drafts were covered in detail in our press releases of 24 March and 5 June. The new Draft… – Continue reading

Russian police search National Reserve Bank over tax evasion

According to the data obtained by investigators, the bank’s executives evaded paying taxes amounting to over 380 million rubles ($10.2 million) in 2011 MOSCOW, September 9. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian police have been conducting searches in the Moscow office of National Reserve Bank (NRB) belonging to businessman Alexander Lebedev for the first… – Continue reading

India losing $1 trillion annually to corruption: Study

Last year, $20 trillion disappeared into secret off-shore tax havens across the world — an amount that can save 3.6 million lives annually. A study conducted by the UK-based NGO, ONE, has found that corruption, tax evasion and corporate malpractices is leading to monetary losses of the scale that could… – Continue reading

The Biggest Tax Scam Ever

I n July, the American pharmaceutical giant AbbVie, maker of the world’s top-selling drug – the arthritis treatment Humira – reached a blockbuster deal to acquire European rival Shire, best known for the attention-deficit medication Adderall. The merger was cheered by Wall Street, not for what the deal will do… – Continue reading

Govt eyes more tax holiday deals

FRANCISTOWN: Government’s negotiations with other countries to sign Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements (DTAA) are underway to ensure investor benefits from tax holiday incentives continue, Boniface Mphetlhe of Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) has said. The Deputy Permanent Secretary in MTI, Mphetlhe, was speaking on the topic of Botswana Investment… – Continue reading