Category: Base Erosion & Profit Shifting

Countries and Companies Join OECD BEPS Train

The OECD’s Action Plan on BEPS was published in July 2013 to reform the international tax system. The Action Plan identified 15 Actions to address BEPS. Seven of the 15 Action Plan items are now moving out of the station. I. Introduction On September 16, 2014 the OECD, together with… – Continue reading

New Report On BEPS Project Impact For Life Sciences Companies

Multinational life sciences companies should review their organizational structures and perform scenario planning to assess the likely impacts of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD’s) Action Plan on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS), says a new report from KPMG. “The Post Base Erosion and Profit Shifting World”… – Continue reading

Bloomberg BNA and Tax Analysts Interview Elan Keller on OECD Forum Tax Chiefs’ Pledge for Greater Cross-Border Cooperation

NEW YORK, Oct. 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Bloomberg BNA’s International Tax Monitor and Tax Analysts interviewed Caplin & Drysdale’s Elan P. Keller concerning a pledge made at the 2014 OECD Forum on Tax Administration (FTA) by tax chiefs from 38 countries to invest in resources to implement a new standard… – Continue reading

Tax justice group exposes corporate tax dodgers

Green Left Weekly and ActionAid will be co-sponsoring a Political Economy Society seminar at Sydney University on October 29 to discuss the case for greater international efforts to combat corporate tax avoidance before the G20 summit. Large corporations systematically avoid paying the statutory level of company tax — a low… – Continue reading

Government is considering interest deduction restrictions for infrastructure

Officials from the Treasury and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have been meeting with representatives of the PPP/ PFI industry to discuss the implications for infrastructure projects of possible restrictions to interest relief.24 Oct 2014 Corporate tax Tax Projects Construction Advisory & Disputes Infrastructure UK Europe In a report on… – Continue reading

OECD gives cautious welcome to Knowledge Box tax scheme

THE OECD has signalled support for the Government’s plan to introduce a so-called “Knowledge Development Box”, but warned that the devil would be in the detail. Pascal Saint-Amans, the director of the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration at the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), told the… – Continue reading

Tax survey stresses excessive scrutiny, significance of BEPS

A new survey by E&Y released at its 33rd Annual International Tax Conference, titled “Connecting the dots” uncovered the issues of navigating multiple challenges, led by increased scrutiny and the effects of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) project. “Tax directors need… – Continue reading

Interest deductions: the new war on base erosion

ITR Correspondent • • • The G20 and OECD’s Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project has rarely been out of the headlines during 2014. At the heart of the BEPS project is the assumption international tax rules make it possible for profits to be taxed in countries that are… – Continue reading

Improving Transparency and Combating Tax Avoidance to Top Agenda of Ninth Forum on Tax Administration, on 23-24 October 2014 in Dublin, Ireland

21/10/14-Tax administrations will play a central role as governments move to implement the measures they have agreed to counter offshore evasion and combat tax avoidance by multinational enterprises. Global initiatives like the OECD/G20 Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) Project and the move toward automatic exchange of financial account account… – Continue reading

Cash-strapped countries eye trillions held offshore

Foreign structures are tempting targets for governments, says Vanessa Houlder. When governments around the world embarked on a drive to plug tax loopholes in 2012, the urgency of the move was underpinned by rising tensions over austerity and inequality. Widespread public outrage over alleged tax-dodging by wealthy individuals and multinationals… – Continue reading

ATO Commissioner Urges Int’l Collaboration On BEPS

Unprecedented international collaboration is needed to overcome a single-, isolated-country view to tackling base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) issues, Andrew Mills, Second Commissioner of Australian Taxation Office (ATO) for Law Design and Practice, has said. In a speech delivered at the Second Annual Tax Forum organized by the Tax… – Continue reading

BEPS already an issue, says CICA

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) plan for base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) is already affecting corporations, according to speakers participating in a Captive Insurance Companies Association (CICA) transfer pricing webinar. Polling results during the webinar revealed attendees’ opinions were in line with tax industry surveys indicating… – Continue reading

Luxembourg: Update Of The OECD Model Tax Convention

On July 15th 2014, the OECD published its 2014 update of the Model Tax Convention (“2014 OECD Update”). This update is the outcome of the work accomplished between 2010 and the end of 2013. It does not however take into account the OECD conclusions of the “Action Plan on Base… – Continue reading

Davis Tax Committee mulls ways to ‘detect and deter’ corporate tax avoidance

The revenue implications for South Africa of ‘base erosion and profit shifting’ by corporate taxpayers are firmly in the crosshairs of the Davis Tax Committee (DTC) and Judge Dennis Davis hinted on Monday that recommendations were being considered to “detect and deter” tax-avoiding financial flows. Speaking at a G20 study… – Continue reading

The changing business model

There has been a lot of press coverage recently around the pricing and tax arrangements of multinationals, in particular Apple, Starbucks and Amazon. In this respect, the EU is undertaking in-depth investigates into these companies to establish whether the companies’ tax arrangements have breached EU State Aid rules. These cases… – Continue reading

Irish Budget 2015 – Rate, Regime, Reputation

Our Reaction The Irish Minister for Finance delivered his Budget 2015 (the “Budget”) speech this week. There was considerable domestic and international anticipation in advance of the Budget against a backdrop of significant recovery in the Irish economy and also international focus (including, in particular, under the OECD BEPS project)… – Continue reading

Ministers reassuring key foreign firms on closure of ‘Double Irish’

Budget measures including new foreign direct investment incentives discussed State agencies and Government Ministers and officials have launched a co-ordinated campaign of letters and phone calls to senior executives of foreign multinationals, to reassure them that Ireland remains a top destination for investment following the budget, Minister for Enterprise Richard… – Continue reading

Strong rules on transfer pricing on agenda in many countries

AMONG several proposals for tax reform, the director-general of the Revenue Department has said the agency would propose an amendment to the Revenue Code concerning transfer pricing, aiming to provide greater clarity on the determination of fair transfer prices. The director-general has indicated that in past years many multinational companies,… – Continue reading

Bringing back black money: Swiss promise India details in time-bound manner

erne/New Delhi: In a major breakthrough in India’s fight against black money allegedly stashed abroad, Switzerland today said it will examine Indian requests for banking information on a priority basis and provide requested details in a time-bound manner. The Swiss authorities would also “assist in obtaining confirmation on genuineness of… – Continue reading

Firms Expect Transfer Pricing Policy Impact From BEPS Project

A vast majority of companies headquartered in the United States expect increased scrutiny of their transfer pricing practices in the short-term as a result of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD’s) base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) project. A recent EY survey, Connecting The Dots, concluded that 30… – Continue reading

International tax avoidance: Is it eroding Canada’s tax base and how should we respond?

TORONTO , Oct. 2, 2014 /CNW/ – Aggressive international corporate tax avoidance by multinational corporations has become the subject of intense political scrutiny. U.S. politicians have called out some American multinationals, including Apple, Amazon, Starbucks and Google, for relocating profits abroad to avoid U.S. taxes. More recently, politicians accused Burger… – Continue reading

OECD releases finalised proposals on key tax base erosion concerns

Introduction Action 1: the digital economy Action 2: hybrid mismatch arrangements Action 5: harmful tax competition Action 6: preventing tax treaty abuse Action 8: guidance on transfer pricing and intangible assets Action 13: transfer pricing documentation and country-by-country reporting Action 15: developing a multilateral legal instrument Next steps Introduction On… – Continue reading

European Commission Crackdown on Special Tax Deals

The European Commission’s recent action to crack down on special deals some European Union governments offer to corporations could be a blow to multinational corporations’ tax-dodging strategies. As we noted in a report earlier this year, three European countries (Ireland, Luxembourg and the Netherlands) are among the top twelve tax… – Continue reading

EU turns its attention to Amazon

European body adds another high-profile name to its crackdown on multinationals’ tax avoidance in bloc. The European Union is broadening its crackdown on multinationals’ tax avoidance schemes, opening an investigation yesterday into Amazon’s practices on suspicion the online retailer is not paying its dues on profits made across the 28-nation… – Continue reading

BEPS, Broken Promises, and What the OECD Can Learn from the WTO About Dispute Settlement Procedures

The question has often arisen whether “international law” is an oxymoron – whether “obligations” in income tax treaties and other international agreements are really binding upon the parties, when they are not buttressed by some sort of enforcement mechanism. That question has never been more relevant in the tax world… – Continue reading

Worldwide: OECD Releases First BEPS Recommendations To G20 In Accordance With Action Plan

As a part of the OECD/G20 project to combat base erosion and profit shifting (“BEPS”), the OECD released the first set of reports and recommendations on September 16, 2014. These reports address seven of the actions described in the 15-point action plan to address BEPS published in July 2013 (the… – Continue reading

Canada: OECD Issues Work On BEPS Actions

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has released the first components of its comprehensive plan for creating an agreed set of international rules for fighting base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) and ending opportunities for double non-taxation. The four model legal instruments and three reports are the first… – Continue reading

Patent box tax break for innovation “does not facilitate profit shifting”, says UK Treasury

The UK government will continue to defend its ‘patent box’ tax break for income from qualifying intellectual property (IP) during discussions to develop a global corporate tax regime, a Treasury official has said.08 Oct 2014 Intellectual Property Tax Patents Corporate tax Life sciences Advanced Manufacturing & Technology Services UK Europe… – Continue reading

Patent box tax break for innovation “does not facilitate profit shifting”, says UK Treasury

The UK government will continue to defend its ‘patent box’ tax break for income from qualifying intellectual property (IP) during discussions to develop a global corporate tax regime, a Treasury official has said.08 Oct 2014 Intellectual Property Tax Patents Corporate tax Life sciences Advanced Manufacturing & Technology Services UK Europe… – Continue reading

Corporate tax rip-off

Eight of the top 200 companies publicly listed on the Australian stock exchange (ASX200) paid no taxes on profits averaging $50 million to more than half a billion dollars over the decade to 2013! More than 20 (10 percent) corporations paid an average tax rate of five percent or less…. – Continue reading

Amazon faces European Union tax avoidance investigation

Amazon, the online retailer, is to face a formal investigation into its European corporate tax practices, the European Commission has announced. The Commission – the executive division of the 28-member European Union – says it will look at the tax agreement made between Amazon and Luxembourg. It suspects the deal… – Continue reading

The Marzen decision: a typical example of BEPS

On June 10, 2014, the Tax Court of Canada (“TCC”) delivered its most recent decision on transfer pricing, one which involved a Barbados structure. In Marzen Artistic Aluminum Ltd. v. The Queen[1] (“Marzen”), Justice Sheridan upheld the Canada Revenue Agency’s (“CRA”) transfer pricing adjustment as well as the penalty under… – Continue reading

Washington resists Hockey’s tax crackdown on Silicon Valley giants

OHN KEHOE The global tax plan being pursued by Australia as G20 president, to compel low-tax paying multinationals such as Google and Apple to ­contribute more revenue to government coffers, could be derailed by political resistance in the United States. A prominent US senator in congress who would likely become… – Continue reading

UK government promises early consultation on new multinational tax avoidance rules

The UK government will shortly set out how it plans to implement globally agreed rules to prevent multinational companies from using artificial techniques to significantly reduce their tax bills, it has announced.06 Oct 2014 Tax Tax Disputes and Investigations UK Europe It has confirmed that it will consult on the… – Continue reading

Bernard Hickey: War on the high-tech dodgers

We pay our taxes. Why won’t they? It’s the topic every tax official and finance minister in the developed world is talking about and acting on, yet we hear little about it in New Zealand. Cracking down on tax avoidance by the world’s biggest technology companies – among them Google,… – Continue reading

Osborne proposals for anti-abuse tax rules could damage UK competitiveness, expert warns

Plans to tackle UK tax avoidance by international technology companies could damage UK competitiveness if they are brought in before international measures are finalised, a tax law expert has warned.02 Oct 2014 Corporate tax Tax Tax Disputes and Investigations TMT Advanced Manufacturing & Technology Services UK Europe Heather Self of… – Continue reading

Osborne bid to fight tax avoidance ‘may empty, not swell, state coffers’

British chancellor George Osborne’s promise to clamp down on a tax avoidance loophole widely used by multinational technology companies could actually result in a reduction in the amount of money the government takes in, the Chartered Institute of Taxation has warned. Patrick Stevens, the group’s tax policy director, admitted the… – Continue reading

eBay pays just £620,000 tax on £1.3bn sales

eBay accused of tax avoidance, but insists it complies with letter of the law By Emma Woollacott, Sep 29, 2014Updated: September 30, 2014 7:24 AM Online auction site eBay got away with paying just £620,000 in tax on sales of over £1.3 billion last year, its latest accounts reveal. The… – Continue reading

Crackdown on Apple in Ireland Opens Front in Tax Avoidance War

The European Commission’s crackdown on the deal between Irish tax authorities and Apple Inc. marks an expansion in the growing global war on tax avoidance by multinational companies. Governments that enable it are now a target. Tuesday, the European Commission said the Irish tax authorities failed to conform to international… – Continue reading

EU says Ireland swapped Apple tax deal for jobs

The European Union has accused Ireland of swerving international tax rules by letting Apple shelter profits worth tens of billions of dollars from revenue collectors in return for maintaining jobs. European Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia told the Dublin government in a letter published on Tuesday that tax deals agreed in… – Continue reading

Taxman targets multinational profit stripping

Inland Revenue has gone shopping for a database to help it fight erosion of the tax base and “profit stripping” by multinational corporations. The database will help the taxman to independently assess the level of profitability companies should be returning for tax purposes by benchmarking the prices multinationals charge their… – Continue reading

Hiding Assets Under Pet Names Looks Willful, Even For Lionel Messi With 400 Goals

There is nothing illegal about tax planning. Yet some things are legal while others are not, and the lines can sometimes get fuzzy. Add to that the fact that some people go to extraordinary lengths to avoid paying taxes, and it can be a recipe for disaster. Increasingly, if you… – Continue reading

OECD: tax avoidance rules must avoid “collateral damage” on fund management industry

The fund management industry could be exempted from new global rules intended to combat tax avoidance by multinational companies if further work finds that they may “hamper legitimate transactions”, according to the Office for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).26 Sep 2014 Corporate Tax Corporate tax Tax Disputes and Investigations Investment… – Continue reading

The Skinny on Corporate Inversions

Corporate financial accounting and taxation are complex subjects. For this reason, many people tune out when issues that involve corporate tax practices rise to the level of public debate. Unfortunately, many legislators shy away from these issues for similar reasons. But while corporate taxation can be mind-bogglingly complex, nontax experts… – Continue reading