Category: Base Erosion & Profit Shifting

Documents reveal Kurchenko’s alleged tax evasion schemes

The young Ukrainian ex-billionaire Serhiy Kurchenko, now widely suspected of being a front man for overthrown President Viktor Yanukovych’s family, clearly liked offshore destinations. His companies registered in offshore zones are now accused of trading in oil products using a tax evasion scheme that cost Ukraine’s government an estimated $1...

United Kingdom: The OECD Base Erosion And Profit Shifting Action Plan

There has been considerable publicity in recent months on the alleged tax avoidance perpetrated by multinationals that has resulted in the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) publishing its action plan on base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS). The action plan, consisting of 15 proposals to counter the perceived...

Corporate tax avoidance ‘scheme’ hurting Canada, expert says

Country’s corporate tax rate sits at about 25 per cent As Canadians dutifully file personal income tax returns during the coming weeks, consider this: many profitable companies pay little or no tax. In an interview this week on The Sunday Edition, Dennis Howlett, executive director of Canadians for Tax Fairness,...

Apple iTax: made in Ireland, designed in the US

Apple, famous for its innovative products, is equally creative in its tax structure. From 2009 to 2012, it successfully sheltered US$44 billion from being taxed anywhere in the world, including sales generated in Australia. While there are probably some sound reasons for Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, to claim in a US congressional...

Canada: Businesses Face More Onerous Transfer Pricing Documentation And Country-By-Country Tax Reporting

The OECD proposes to reform transfer pricing documentation for multinational enterprises and to impose onerous country-by-country (CbC) reporting obligations, including disclosure of taxes paid in each country in which a business operates, in a bid to enhance revenue authorities’ abilities to identify high risk transfer pricing situations and to make...

How to Get Your Profits Out of China

BEIJING – Wholly Foreign Owned Enterprises (WFOEs) are able to repatriate funds out of China in a variety of forms, for which tax implications vary according to the form of repatriation used and the Double Taxation Agreement (DTA) in place between China and the recipient country. The four most commonly...

Big money dodges taxes

Eighteen American multinationals – companies such as Nike, Microsoft and Apple – have used tax havens abroad to avoid what Citizens for Tax Justice estimates as $92 billion in federal taxes. This is money that could be used to provide universal pre-school for America’s children. CTJ also found 235 companies...

Aligning tax with the times

The aggressive approach of Indian tax authorities on transfer pricing and international tax matters underlines the government’s intention of taking strong action to defend its tax base. When it comes to taxation of cross-border transactions, India’s inclination to widen the source-based tax rules is clearly demonstrated by the retrospective amendments,...

New Discussion Launched on Tax Treaty Abuse

PARIS – The OECD is initiating an international discussion into measures to prevent the occurrence of profits shifting and tax evasion through the abuse and misuse of international tax treaties. Late last week the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development released a public discussion draft “Preventing the Granting Of Treaty Benefits In...

Tax Evasion Threatens Africa’s Socio- Economic Transformation: UN Expert

The quest of African countries to carry out economic stability and transformation is threatened by illicit financial outflows through tax evasion and avoidance, a UN expert observed here on Thursday. He said the draining of tax revenues and scarce foreign exchange resources stifled growth and socio-economic development and weakened governance....

NBR forms cell to enforce TP law

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has formed the much-awaited cell recently in a bid to conduct preparatory work for enforcing the transfer pricing (TP) law. The board has issued an order, ‘Transfer Pricing Cell Order-2014’ by defining nine-point work-plan for the cell. The cell will work under the supervision...

El Salvador Unveils New Transfer Pricing Return

El Salvador’s tax authority (DGII) has published a new Form 982 for transfer pricing returns. The form can be downloaded from the tax authority’s website. The new Form 982 now includes section C, which requires information on supporting documentation about transactions with low-tax jurisdictions. Section B already required details regarding...

Iceland Introduces Transfer Pricing Framework

Iceland has recently enacted its own transfer pricing legislation, which became effective from January 1, 2014. Prior to that date, there were no specific transfer pricing provisions in Icelandic law. Iceland’s new transfer pricing legislation, included in Article 57 of the Income Tax Law (No 90/2003), is based on the...

Australia’s new transfer pricing laws overlap the thin cap rules: new challenges for taxpayers

The overlap of Australia’s new transfer pricing laws with the thin capitalization rules is causing challenges and likely duplication of analysis for taxpayers – particularly for the arm’s length amount-of-debt test. Australia legislated comprehensive new transfer pricing laws in 2012[i] and 2013.[ii]  These laws were passed in two installments: Subdivision 815-A, dealing with...

Ortega’s Zara Fashions Tax Avoidance by Shifting Profits to Alps

Zara’s celebrity chic helps make its Spanish parent company, Inditex SA, the world’s biggest fashion retailer. Singer Taylor Swift, reality-television personality Kim Kardashian and Kate Middleton, Prince William’s wife, have all been spotted wearing the stylish, low-cost brand. Another reason for Inditex’s industry-best profit margins of almost 15 percent: the...

G20 to tackle transfer pricing with new tax exchange scheme

The days of multinational companies being able to use the Double Irish Dutch Sandwich to avoid taxation may soon be coming to an end, with the G20 group of nations looking to create a reporting standard to allow for automatic exchange of tax information. In the official communique coming at the end...

Vodafone’s £1bn Indian tax bill row: peace talks about to break down

India’s finance ministry is preparing to seek the cabinet’s approval to withdraw conciliation proceedings with the UK telecoms firm. Vodafone, the world’s second-largest mobile operator by subscribers, entered India in 2007 by acquiring Hutchison Whampoa’s mobile phone assets. It is contesting a tax bill of about 112bn rupees (£1.1bn) relating...

HMRC now targeting mid-tier firms in its transfer pricing investigations, says expert

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) collected more tax from smaller businesses than large multinationals last year as a result of its investigations into firms’ transfer pricing arrangements, according to figures obtained by Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind Out-Law.com. Corporate tax expert Heather Self of Pinsent Masons said that HMRC...