Equality is one of the core values of modern democratic societies. It is no accident that equality featured in opening preamble to the United States Declaration of Independence in 1776 and the first article of both the French Declaration of the Rights of Man in 1789 and the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights…

The judgments of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) on the withholding tax exemption provided by the Interest and Royalties Directive (available here – the ‘IRD judgment’) and the Parent-Subsidiary Directive (available here – ‘the PSD judgment’) on February 26, 2019 (‘the Danish cases’) have raised many issues to discuss. As some authors have pointed…

Taxation of the digital economy has become a war in the post-BEPS world. As with any war, there are more or less clear rivals and there will be of course winners and losers. It goes without saying that there are also “casualties” in this conflict, i.e. those policy options initially included in the drafts published…

Almost every foreign client I have advised has at some stage told me how complex the Indian Income Tax Act is. And those who follow Indian tax jurisprudence closely know that judicial decisions, in many cases, are doubly complex. Recently, India’s Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT), New Delhi was asked to decide if the tax…

Being familiar with the Spanish tax environment, readers will know that Spain does not withhold taxes on interest paid to EU residents. This domestic exemption has been in force for several decades, long before the EU Interest and Royalties Directive. The domestic exemption has the beauty of simplicity: it applies to all EU-resident lenders, without…

Taxation of the digital economy featured in discussion on the implementation of the OECD/G20 BEPS action items at the annual conference of the Canadian Tax Foundation in Toronto on 21 November 2017. Several speakers note that no generally accepted solution had been found to address the impact of the digitalisation of the global economy on…

I was recently asked to analyze the often quoted figure of $150 billion lost by the U.S. Treasury to foreign non-tax compliance by U.S. taxpayers.  My transcribed remarks are below.  Also, see William Byrnes’ Guide to FATCA & CRS Compliance (Matthew Bender 5th ed., 2017) at pp. 30, 33-34, 50, 59, 109-112, and 119-122. https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2926119 How…

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…

The Italian Supreme Court issued a landmark case (n. 27113 December 2016) setting out the principles to be taken into account when analyzing whether a company can be deemed the “beneficial owner” for the purpose of being entitled to double tax treaty benefits. In particular, the Italian Supreme Court examined whether a company resident for…

On February 1, 2017, India’s Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley, presented the country’s 2017-18 Budget, which contains several tax proposals in the area of international tax law, including the introduction of a new provision to provide for transfer pricing secondary adjustments and new thin capitalization rules. The Budget also contains much-needed clarity on the tax treatment…

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…

Probably without noticing it, Colombia did not take into account that signing the recent DTT with France would allow some treaty-covered taxpayers to claim Most-Favoured-Nation (MFN) protection. Some of Colombia’s DTTs, as the ones signed with Spain, Chile, Switzerland, Portugal and Mexico, include Most-Favoured-Nation clauses with respect to royalties. In this sense, it is important…

When UK voters went to the polls on 23 June 2016 and voted by a slim majority to leave the European Union, few of them had in mind the impact on taxation.  Future generations are unlikely to view it kindly. Looked at from the present the dominating features are uncertainty and disruption of settled tax…

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…