On 21 March, just a few days after the publication of the (frankly not exciting) OECD report on the tax challenges of digitalization, the European Commission presented its own “package” on the taxation of the digital economy. This comprises: (a) a proposal for a Directive on the corporate taxation of a “significant digital presence”, or…

On 6 March 2018, the CJEU has issue its judgment on the case Achmea BV (C-284/16 here), that can impact many areas of the EU law, including tax matters. The Court states that “Articles 267 and 344 TFEU must be interpreted as precluding a provision in an international agreement concluded between Member States, such as Article 8…

On 6 March 2018 the Grand Chamber of the CJEU ruled in the Achmea decision (C-284/16) that the bilateral investment treaty (BIT) between The Netherlands and the Slovak Republic violated EU law because it allowed an arbitral tribunal to interpret provisions of EU law in a dispute between investors and (Member) States, while such interpretation…

Increased focus on taxation of cross-border situations involving both individuals and companies is one of the key features of the post-BEPS international tax environment. One central aspect of this is increased administrative cooperation between tax administrations in exchange of information and assistance in recovery of taxes. Territoriality principle Recent UK decisions have emphasised the need…

On 21 March, the European Commission will publish a proposal for a two-fold strategy to reform the taxation of digital companies like Google and Facebook. The most recent draft of the proposal that has been distributed on March 15 suggests that one should lower one’s expectations. Last autumn, a group of EU Finance Ministers propelled…

The Spanish Supreme Court recently issued (February 19, Spanish version here) a long awaited judgment confirming that the Spanish inheritance tax legal framework breaches the free movement of capital when taxing non-EU residents on Spanish assets received through inheritance. The origin of this discrimination is the Spanish regional inheritance taxation system, under which Spanish regions…

Among the main issues the BEPS project intends to address is the phenomenon of “double non-taxation”. It is a term that is used quite frequently nowadays; primarily in order to describe situations that are considered as problematic from a policy perspective. However, not all situations where something remains untaxed provoke public outrage. As, for example,…

A Directive on Tax Dispute Resolution was adopted by European Member States early in October 2017. It had been proposed by the European Commission 1 year ago as part of the Corporate Tax Reform Package, along with the Common Consolidated Corporate Tax Base (CCCTB) and the amendment of the Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive (ATAD) regarding hybrid…

Adoption of the EU Council Directive on Tax Dispute Resolution Mechanisms in the European Union on 10 October 2017 is a milestone in international tax dispute resolution. The Directive offers a uniform mechanism to address tax treaty disputes among EU member states that meets the BEPS Action 14 minimum standard, and largely renders the arbitration…

Controlled Foreign Corporation rules are a hot issue in Europe and beyond. Last year, EU countries agreed to have national CFC rules in force by 2019. The Big Four – Germany, France, Italy and Spain – need to make minor changes only to their existing rules. (Like in the accountancy profession, there used to be…

The decision of the CJEU in Republic of Austria v Federal Republic of Germany (Case C-648/15) on 12 September 2017 is a landmark decision in tax treaty dispute resolution. Han Verhagen raised important questions about the Court as an arbitrator for tax treaty disputed in his blog-post on 13 September 2017. One obvious benefit in…

On 12 September 2017, the CJEU confirmed that it has jurisdiction over a dispute between Austria and Germany regarding the interpretation of a double tax convention entered into between the two Member States under article 273 TFEU.1)CJEU 12 September 2017, case number C-648/15, Opinion delivered by Advocate-General Mengozzi on 27 April 2017. The case was…

The objective of the EU Merger Directive (“MD”) is to remove tax obstacles to cross-border restructuring operations while safeguarding the financial interests of the Member States.[1] In aligning these two aims, the MD employs a carry-over relief mechanism at both company and shareholder level. Through the carry-over mechanism at shareholder level, laid down in Article…

This contribution lays down a general plan for what the EU should do in order to attain a harmonized set of norms regulating the allocation of taxing rights among Member States and in the relation between those States and third countries, which would benefit both Member States and their taxpayers by eliminating several instances of…