Category: OECD

Ireland – Finance Act 2016 and Offshore Accounts

In his Budget speech on 11 October 2016, the Minister for Finance announced a comprehensive programme of targeted intervention against offshore tax evasion. Positive action is required ahead of 1 May 2017 for those with undeclared income and gains from offshore assets. Finance Act 2016, which includes legislative changes required… – Continue reading

Customs mulls amending GST Act to tax foreign online service suppliers

KUALA LUMPUR: The Royal Malaysian Customs Department is considering amendments to the Goods and Services Tax Act (GST Act) to start taxing foreign online service suppliers, said deputy director-general Datuk Subromaniam Tholasy. “E-commerce is pretty much catered for, except business-to-consumer (B2C) for example, downloads from overseas, how do we tax… – Continue reading

Register of people with significant control will not affect Crown territories

The government has quashed calls to look at extending the requirement to publish a public register of people with significant control to companies incorporated in the Crown dependencies and overseas territories, as part of a bid to increase tax transparency, saying new rules on the automatic exchange of information are… – Continue reading

Automatic Exchange of Information and Common Reporting Standards in Malaysia

In efforts towards global transparency, over 100 countries have agreed to automatically exchange information relating to financial accounts (AEOI) with each other under the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters (Convention). The OECD had also developed the Common Reporting Standards (CRS) which set out the common information to… – Continue reading

Plans for Australia to adopt a ‘Google tax’ welcomed by advocacy group

Coalition’s proposed diverted profits tax could capture billions in revenue from multinationals using profit-shifting practices, says Tax Justice Network One of the biggest critics of multinational tax avoidance has welcomed the Coalition’s proposed “Google tax”, saying a similar tax in the UK looks likely to increase corporate tax payments by… – Continue reading

Moving towards a simplified tax regime

As per the Economic Survey 2016, the ratio of Indian taxpayers to voters is 4%; ideally it should be roughly 23% at existing levels of economic and political development. The tax to GDP ratio at 16.6% is well below the emerging market economy norm of 21% and OECD average of 34%…. – Continue reading

The G77 will push for ‘tax justice’ through a UN tax body, says Ecuador’s foreign affairs minister

The creation of a new United Nations tax body to clamp down on tax dodging, which experts say could cost developing countries more than $200 billion a year in missed revenues, will be a key priority of the Group of 77 and China under Ecuadorian leadership, according to the country’s… – Continue reading

Pakistan has introduced another amnesty scheme for tax evaders – but why?

This, like previous initiatives, seems nothing more than a thinly veiled revenue measure. A new amnesty scheme is being considered to allow those who hold wealth abroad to bring it back into the country without facing a penalty other than paying a nominal amount of tax on the value of… – Continue reading

Special tax regime for Non-Habitual Portuguese Resident individuals

Portuguese income tax law provides for a 20% reduced rate and, in respect to income obtained abroad, a full tax exemption, for certain types of income derived by individuals having the status of Non-Habitual Portuguese Residents (NHPR). Any individual that in a certain year becomes tax resident in Portugal will… – Continue reading

Cayman Islands: Cayman Islands AEOI Update – Second Tranche of CRS Regulations Released

The Cayman Islands Government issued the second tranche of the Common Reporting Standard (“CRS”) regulations at the end of December 2016. Updated Guidance Notes will be issued in Q1 2017 by the Cayman Islands Tax Information Authority (“TIA”) to assist with the implementation of the regulations. Furthermore, TIA stated in… – Continue reading

Snapchat opts for London over Dublin for international HQ

Move could be a worrying indicator of investment trends post-Brexit, post-Beps Snap, the company behind Snapchat, has opted to open its new new international headquarters in London, rather than Dublin, Amsterdam or Luxembourg, bucking a trend which for decades has seen US multinationals book their international sales in one of… – Continue reading

Cyprus: Country-By-Country Reporting Under Base Erosion And Profit Shifting Action 13

Cyprus signed the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement for the Automatic Exchange of Country-by Country Reports between its member states on 1 November 2016 after approval by the Council of Ministers at its meeting held on 28 September 2016. Following publication in the government gazette… – Continue reading

Worldwide: The OECD’s Conquest Of Domestic Tax Codes: Understanding The Costs And Consequences Of The BEPS Project

Authored by IFC Media Recent global events from the release of the Panama Papers to a series of high-profile inversions have given international tax regulators both rhetorical ammunition and public support to execute a global crackdown on multinational tax planning. The goal is to increase total taxes paid by global… – Continue reading

Three More Nations Commit To BEPS Minimum Standards

A further three countries have committed to participate in international base erosion and profit shifting discussions and implement minimum standards, under the OECD’s new “inclusive framework” for countries. The OECD confirmed on January 6 that the three territories are: Bermuda, Côte d’Ivoire, and Kazakhstan. This brings the total number of… – Continue reading

Argentina: Argentina And The United States Of America Signed An Exchange Of Information Agreement

On December 23, 2016, the US ambassadors and Alberto Abad signed an agreement for the exchange of tax information on request. 1. Introduction For the past few years, Argentina has been an active participant in the progress of exchange of international tax information. More than seventeen agreements have been signed… – Continue reading

Hong Kong Needs Measured BEPS Response: Report

Hong Kong’s Financial Services Development Council (FSDC) has issued a paper setting out key recommendations for the Government to consider in the area of international tax law. The paper, which was issued on December 29, 2016, recommends that the Government should issue clearer guidance on appropriate transfer pricing methodologies for… – Continue reading

Switzerland: Federal Council Adopts Dispatch On Exchange Of Country-By-Country Reports

On 23 November 2016, the Swiss Federal Council adopted the dispatch on the Multilateral Agreement on the exchange of Country-by-Country Reports (CbCRs) and draft federal implementing legislation. The proposal is aimed at implementing the minimum standard of the G20 countries and the OECD to combat base erosion and profit shifting… – Continue reading

Cayman Islands: Cayman Islands Issue OECD Common Reporting Standard Penalty Regulations

The Cayman Islands Tax Information Authority (International Tax Compliance) (Common Reporting Standard) (Amendment) Regulations, 2016 (the “Regulations“) were issued on 19 December 2016. The Regulations amend the Tax Information Authority (International Tax Compliance) (Common Reporting Standard) Regulations, 2015 currently in force in the Cayman Islands and contain the enforcement powers… – Continue reading

Bahamas makes progress on implementation of Common Reporting Standard

NASSAU, The Bahamas — December 2016 marks a significant month for the Financial Services Industry in The Bahamas. The much-anticipated Bill to provide for the implementation of the Common Standard on Reporting and due diligence for financial Account Information in Tax matters and for connected purposes was passed unanimously in… – Continue reading

New Zealand Issues Guidance On OECD’s Common Reporting Standard

New Zealand’s Inland Revenue has published draft guidance to help financial institutions prepare for the OECD’s Common Reporting Standard for the Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information in Tax Matters. The country is expected to pass legislation to implement the CRS by March 2017. The CRS is an international standard… – Continue reading

Mauritius: Joint Statement By The FSC & The FSPA

The Mauritius IFC: Driving Growth in Africa As a jurisdiction of substance, the Mauritius International Financial Centre (Mauritius IFC) has been instrumental in driving quality investments in Africa, leading to sustained growth and prosperity across the continent. It is therefore with deep regret that we take note of the misperceptions… – Continue reading

Apple, Netflix, MS and IBM may have to pay `google tax’

The `Google tax’ could soon ensnare the likes of IBM, Microsoft, Amazon Web Services, Apple and Netflix, which provide online services in India. Cloud computing companies and content providers with customers in the country may be needed to pay equalisation levy on their revenue from the next financial year as… – Continue reading

Black money across the border: Why Pakistan’s elite are quivering as UAE demands tax information

According to unofficial estimates, more than $2 billion has flowed into Dubai real estate from Pakistanis every year for the past three years. Last week, account holders in a major UAE bank began receiving letters alerting them that soon they would be required to furnish information “with a view to… – Continue reading

Multinational CFOs increasingly view tax as reputational risk

Tax directors and CFOs at multinational companies are facing increasing numbers of tax audits, and are becoming concerned about the impact of public perception of their tax planning on their company’s reputation, according to research by Taxand. Its fifth annual global survey of CFOs, tax and finance directors across Europe,… – Continue reading

Monaco ratifies international tax convention

Monaco has ratified the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters. The ratification underlines Monaco’s commitment to fighting tax evasion and avoidance. It also means the principality has taken another important step in implementing the Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information in Tax Matters, developed by the… – Continue reading

Brazil and Switzerland agree to automatic exchange of financial account information in tax matters

The Governments of Brazil and Switzerland have released a joint declaration expressing their intent to introduce, on a reciprocal basis, an automatic exchange of financial account information in tax matters based on the OECD Common Reporting Standard, beginning in the year 2018. The first transmission of data will take place… – Continue reading

Tax Agreement with The Turks & Caicos Islands enters into force

The Isle of Man Government’s Agreement for the Exchange of Information relating to Tax Matters with the Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands enters into force on 29 December 2016. The Agreement was signed by His Excellency Peter Beckingham, Governor to the Turks and Caicos Islands, on 30 June… – Continue reading

Ireland Rejects Oxfam’s Tax Haven Claims

Ireland’s Ministry of Finance, the EU and several other governments have emphatically rejected claims by Oxfam International that the countries are tax havens, with Ireland insisting its corporate tax laws are “fully compliant” with international best practices when it comes to transparency and information exchange. The Irish government said the… – Continue reading

Richards accuses Oxfam of ‘serial errors’

Finance minister Bob Richards has expressed dismay at Oxfam’s claim that Bermuda is the world’s worst corporate tax haven. And the Progressive Labour Party joined him to condemn the report as “extremely disappointing”. Mr Richards pointed to “serial errors” in the global charity’s report on offshore centres, which found that… – Continue reading

Rate Competition Is New International Tax Planning Reality

Lower corporate tax rates around the world are expected to play an important part in multinational companies’ tax planning in 2017, with a rate as low as 15 percent on the table in the U.S. and countries such as the U.K. planning to maintain or lower their current rates. A… – Continue reading

International taxation changes could ‘pose a major challenge’ to Malta’s iGaming sector

Changes in the way international taxation is collected, thanks to recommendations made by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) could “pose a major challenge to the sustainability and profitability” of many iGaming operations in Malta. This information came to light through a report issued by Country Profiler on… – Continue reading

Showdown between ATO and big business looms as list of company tax paid is revealed

A showdown between the Australian Taxation Office and the nation’s largest companies including Chevron, Crown and BHP Billiton is looming as the tax man hits seven large companies with tax bills amounting to $2 billion. On Friday, the ATO released its corporate tax transparency report for 2014-15, which includes limited… – Continue reading

Ukraine: Tax Residency Status: Issues To Consider When Moving Abroad

Recent social and economic developments have had a powerful impact on many Ukrainian citizens and businesses and have led them to look for a better life beyond the borders of Ukraine. Obviously, Ukrainians moving abroad is not something new. Periods of economic crisis in almost every state are usually accompanied… – Continue reading

Final opportunity to disclose offshore assets before 1 May 2017 introduced by Finance Bill 2016

1. Why was a new offshore provision introduced by this year’s Finance Bill? Following revelations in the “Panama Papers” of major worldwide tax evasion in April 2016 (which included certain Irish Resident account holders), the Minister for Finance announced on budget day, 12 October 2016 that this year’s Finance Bill… – Continue reading

Saint-Amans: greater co-operation the only way to maintain tax sovereignty

Tax sovereignty is incompatible with the globalised world, according to OECD tax policy director Pascal Saint-Amans Speaking at the Public Accounts Committee’s Global Tax Transparency Summit, Saint-Amans told told ministers, tax professionals and international representatives ‘a gap’ still exists ‘between the world globalising and tax sovereignty’. ‘As members of parliament,… – Continue reading

Pak-China avoidance of double taxation treaty inked

ISLAMABAD – Pakistan and China signed third protocol to the avoidance of double taxation agreement that would allow a Chinese bank and a state-owned investment fund to avail income tax exemption on interest income from loans for energy projects under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chairman… – Continue reading

South Africa Provides FAQs On CRS

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) has released guidance, in a question and answer format, for financial institutions (FIs) seeking to understand the impact of the OECD’s Common Reporting Standard (CRS). The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s CRS obliges countries and jurisdictions to obtain financial information from their FIs… – Continue reading

ICC welcomes adoption of OECD Multilateral Convention

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) welcomes the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD)’s release last week of a multilateral convention which allows for swift implementation of a series of tax treaty measures encompassed in the OECD/G20 Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project. The release follows the conclusion… – Continue reading

Cayman commits to BEPS rules to counter EU blacklist

Also commits to country-by-country reporting Cayman has committed in principle to a project reforming the application of tax rules in cross-border business to combat the erosion of tax bases and the artificial shifting of profits to low or no-tax jurisdictions. Developed by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, base… – Continue reading

Urgency in China to understand CRS impact

There are signs of a growing urgency in mainland China to better understand the implications of next year’s introduction of the Common Reporting Standard (CRS). Institutions from within China’s trust and banking sectors, as well as private clients, are increasingly seeking guidance from jurisdictions which were early adopters of the… – Continue reading

Common reporting standard: Implementation in Asia

Common reporting standard: Implementation in Asia The Common Reporting Standard (“CRS”) is an internationally agreed standard for automatic exchange of financial account information (“AEOI”) on financial account information, endorsed by the OECD and the Global Forum for Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes. The CRS framework requires financial… – Continue reading

Switzerland eyes AEOI with 21 countries

Switzerland, which has been working to end its years-long practice of banking secrecy, on Thursday said it aimed to dramatically increase the number of countries it cooperates with toward international fiscal transparency. The Swiss government said in a statement that it wanted to extend the automatic exchange of information (AEOI)… – Continue reading

Transfer Pricing Behind Jump In UK Tax In Dispute

The amount of tax potentially underpaid by big businesses by shifting profits to other jurisdictions has increased by 60 percent in the last year, to GBP3.8bn (USD4.8bn), according to figures obtained by international law firm Pinsent Masons. The figure is the “tax under consideration” by HMRC’s Large Business Directorate, being… – Continue reading

Kenya to lend its tax expertise to Botswana after historic deal

The Kenya Revenue Authority has signed an international memorandum of understanding on tax collaboration with Botswana, to provide administration assistance from next year. Tax officials from Kenya and Botswana on Thursday agreed to the assistance project that marks the first South-South cooperation pact under the Tax Inspectors Without Borders programme… – Continue reading

Andorra to renounce banking secrecy as it sheds tax haven status

Pyrenees principality approves automatic sharing of information on accounts held by non-residents from EU countries Andorran lawmakers have agreed to end banking secrecy in the Pyrenees mountains principality, approving automatic sharing of information on accounts held by non-residents. The General Council, Andorra’s unicameral parliament, approved a measure that will come… – Continue reading

Implementation of Common Reporting Standard in Hong Kong – Implications for Family Trust with a Private Trust Company as Trustee

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) issued the Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Information in Tax Matters (Standard for AEOI) in July 2014, which aims to prevent offshore tax evasion and maintain the integrity of tax systems. Over 100 jurisdictions have committed to comply with the Standard… – Continue reading

EU Mulls ‘Substance Test’ to Determine Zero-Rate Tax Havens

European Union member countries are considering a “substance test” to determine whether a country or jurisdiction with a zero corporate tax rate qualifies as a tax haven that doesn’t reflect “real economic activity.” After a host of EU member countries rejected in early November the use of a zero corporate… – Continue reading