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…

More and more soccer players hit the newspapers because they are not just creative in the soccer stadiums but also in dealing with their tax returns. Recently we have seen the press reporting on Lionel Messi and Christiano Ronaldo. Let I make instantly clear to you that I have no knowledge at all about soccer…

General On February 9, 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (‘CJEU’) rendered its decision in the X v Staatssecretaris van Financiën (‘X’). The case concerned the possibility of applying the Schumacker doctrine to a non-resident taxpayer in the situation where he earned almost all his income not in one but in several…

Introduction and EU law applicable On 8 March 2017 the Court of Justice of the European Union (hereafter “CJ”) delivered its decision in the Case C-448/15, Wereldhave, dealing with the interpretation of the “subject to tax” requirement provided for the application of the Parent-Subsidiary Directive (both Directive 90/435/EEC and Directive 2011/96/EU). Under article 1(1) of Directive…

Lower energy cost is a major factor for U.S. manufacturers … to be able to offer on par production costs to China, and 10 percent to 20 percent lower costs than European manufacture. I’ve been remiss in my blogging since the surprise victory of the presidential election.  It is not because I think the apocalypse…

There are several misconceptions in international taxation, some of them more pervasive than others.  Many are often repeated by speakers at tax conferences without being contradicted. The first is the so-called interest deduction bias.  It is not the main topic of this blog, but I will deal with it by way of introduction. The Interest…

On September 14th, 2016, the Brazilian Federal Revenue Service (“RFB”) published the Normative Instruction RFB No. 1,658/2016, which included legal entities incorporated as holding companies in Austria in the list of privileged fiscal regimes. Although the list mentions “legal entities incorporated in the form of holding company“, the wording is imprecise, because the administration of…

Tax practitioner’s in the northern hemisphere taking their summer holidays may well have included the OECD discussion draft of 5 July 2016 on the attribution of profits to permanent establishments as part of their holiday reading (a mere 40 pages). See post on July 21, 2016. Over 50 organisations and individuals submitted comments(published by the…

Harmonisation of the efforts to discourage tax avoidance in the EU Recently, besides the objective of maintaining a balanced allocation1 (a reflection of the principle of territoriality), the imperative of restoring trust in the fairness of tax systems has been gaining terrain as a possible justification for restrictions of free movement rights2. The Member States…

The attribution of profits to a permanent establishment is already a complex issue with at least three separate regimes in the tax treaty context- the OECD Authorised Approach under the 2010 OECD version of Article 7 of the OECD Model, the AOA subject to limitations required by the pre-2010 version and that permitted by Article…

On June 27, 2016 the EU Commission published the long awaited Starbucks State Aid decision (see here).  The EU Commission’s decision challenges the outcome of the Advanced Pricing Agreement (APA) between the Netherlands Tax Authority (Tax Authority) and Starbucks Manufacturing BV (SMBV), a wholly owned and controlled coffee roasting operation. Below is the Part I…

“Improper and plainly undermines legal certainty and the rule of law.”  This is how four U.S. senators – including the Chairman and Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee – recently described the European Commission’s State aid investigation into tax rulings by Member States, including into Ireland’s tax treatment of Apple. Of course the…

1. The Tendency We live in a time where the media, politicians, NGOs and activists increasingly are preoccupied with international tax matters. A simultaneous preoccupation is observed among the OECD, G20, EU countries and most other developed countries alike. This has led to continuously increasing regulatory requirements and strengthened legislation towards companies. The tendency is…

In highly dramatic fashion the French tax authorities and IT specialists raided Google’s headquarters and McDonalds. I don’t own Google stock. I’m not in favor of Google’s near monopoly on search (though it has accomplished this by offering a really great product and (free) work tools that make my life much easier).  I don’t eat…