Introduction On 28 January 2016, the proposal for a council directive laying down rules against tax avoidance practices that directly affect the functioning of the internal market (the so-called ATA-directive) has been published. Article 4 of the ATA directive contains an interest limitation rule that very closely resembles the German interest limitation rule which is…

Model tax treaties do matter. The OECD and UN Models constitute precedent books with standard clauses that contracting states can follow or adapt to suit their particular circumstances. The US Model treaty, in contrast, is a statement of intent. The preamble to the revised 2016 US Model Income Tax Convention released by the US Treasury…

(about the switch-over clause in the ATA Directive) In order to combat BEPS, the European Commission is proposing to start taxing low taxed non-EU income. That sounds reasonable, but the consequence will be that in the EU, there will be no more profits to tax. This is a proposal that is not necessary to prevent…

Written by Associate Professor, PhD, Michael Tell, Department of Law, Copenhagen Business School and Technical Advisor, CORIT Advisory. Darwin’s theory of evolution states that complex creatures evolve from more simplistic ancestors, while natural selection ensures that only the fittest survive and the others become evolutionary “dead-ends”. The aim of this blog contribution is to address…

The longstanding view on application of the arm’s length principle is that it is generally based on a comparison of the conditions in a controlled transaction with the conditions in transactions between independent enterprises. A transaction, for this purpose, almost always involves a contract. This is because a contract, whether made in writing, orally or…

Today the European Commission released its first set of decisions on corporate tax rulings, which it has investigated for over a year. Starbucks Manufacturing EMEA and Fiat Finance and Trade were the first test cases where final decisions have been issued. At this point in time, only press releases are available. Formal decisions will be…

It is the annual Session of the UN Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters.  This Ad Hoc subsidiary body of the Economic and Social Council of the UN (ECOSOC) is responsible for the UN Model Double Taxation Convention and the Manual for the Negotiation of Bilateral Tax Treaties between Developed and Developing…

As from the first BEPS proposals with respect to intangibles, it has been considered that the Arm’s Length Standard (“ALS”) is “slowly but surely being relegated to the back seat” of the OECD Guidelines.[1. R. Robillard, BEPS: Is the OECD Now at the Gates of Global Formulary Apportionment?, 43 Intertax 447, at 447.] Indeed, some…

The scope of the present article will be narrow. The aim is to point out a misinterpretation of the Cadbury ruling, which might have caused a flawed theory of the compatibility of certain CFC regimes with EU law. I do not use the appellative “flawed” to sound overconfident, but because in my view, good law…

In a globalized economy, financial crimes –including tax crimes– threaten the strategic, political and economic interest of developed and developing countries as well, and undermine confidence in the global financial system. The traditional perception was that tax evasion, even of a criminal nature, was somehow different from money laundering and other financial crimes (e.g., corruption),…

In the last few months I have been deeply committed with the Klaus Vogel Lecture, which will be held in September 25, 2015, in the Vienna University of Economics and Business (see invitation here). I have chosen the theme “Arm’s Length beyond the Guidelines of the OECD”. My research has led to the writing of…

In many respects a multilateral tax treaty represents an utopian view of international tax law: a wide consensus among nation states to submit themselves to a common set of rules that govern the levying of taxes across national boundaries. While there have been several examples of attempts at multilateral double taxation treaties, such as the…