zaterdag 26 december 2015

2015 Global Tax Policy Trends

There is a global trend towards transparency in tax matters and, consequently, transparency may well be the watchword of 2015.

The impact of regulation continues to present a challenge for financial services providers globally. Since the global financial crisis, governments and regulators have been focusing their attention on altering, tightening and clarifying rules to increase confidence in the financial services industry, deter financial crime, provide greater tax transparency and increase tax revenue by reducing evasion. These measures however can have far reaching implications, with changes in one jurisdiction or economic area having the potential to present changes on a global basis. One of the best examples of this is FATCA.

A further challenge awaits financial institutions in the next initiative in global tax transparency - the Common Reporting Standard (CRS) - which comes into effect in January 2016 and is a global initiative compared to the US centric FATCA.

Initiatives seeking increased transparency between taxpayers and tax authorities derive their momentum from a number of factors that include development issues, ideas of fairness, government crackdowns on tax avoidance and advances in technology.

Future tax trends for 2016:

  • An increase in the number of disclosure facilities;
  • An increased focus on taxation by national tax authorities and international economic bodies, including increased investigations and improved sophistication in the use of data and systems.

zondag 20 december 2015

Follow-up Special Committee on Tax Rulings

The work of Parliament's Special Committee on Tax Rulings will be continued under a new mandate for six months, starting on 2 December.
The Conference of Presidents of political group leaders decided unanimously to create a special committee as a successor to the special committee on tax rulings (TAXE), which saw its final report adopted on Wednesday 25 November. In the resolution which went with the report, Parliament set out its ideas on how to make corporate taxes fairer across Europe and urged EU member states to agree on mandatory country-by-country reporting by multinationals of profits and taxes, a common consolidated corporate tax base, common definitions for tax terms and more transparency and accountability with regard to their national tax rulings for companies.
The Committee's work will focus on harmful corporate tax regimes and practices at European and international level.

woensdag 9 december 2015

Tax good governance in the world as seen by EU countries

On 12 October 2015, the European Commission pu­blished an update of its list of third country jurisdic­tions that have been identified by EU member states for tax purposes. The update reflects changes in EU member states‘ assessments of third countries‘ tax good governance standards, corrections to national lists and Estonia‘s decision to withdraw all countries from its national list.
While the Commission´s ultimate goal, to develop a common EU approach to third countries in the promo­tion tax transparency, good governance and possibly effective taxation standards, is not yet within reach, the Commission is hoping that the list will encourage member states to update their lists more regularly. Annual updates of member states´ lists are planned. Unlike the list published by the Commission on 17 June 2015, the new list avoids giving the impression of an EU list and specific mention of the most-listed countries.
The previous list had been criticized for containing outdated information, and for not taking into account the transparency criteria monitored by the OECD Global Forum. The CFE has contributed to the up­date process in the Commission´s multi-stakeholder Platform for Tax Good Governance.

dinsdag 1 december 2015

Implications Of The OECD/G20 Base Erosion And Profit Shifting Project

The Subcommittee on Tax Policy of the House Ways and Means Committee has scheduled a public hearing for December 1, 2015, on the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting Project conducted by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development at the request of the Group of Twenty ("OECD/G20 BEPS Project").

The Senate Committee on Finance has scheduled a public hearing on December 1, 2015, titled "International Tax: OECD BEPS and EU State Aid." This document, prepared by the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation, provides background on the OECD/G20 BEPS Project, an overview of its findings and recommendations, and a discussion of its potential implications for U.S. tax policy.

More information:

FATCA & CRS - Belgian Bill of Law

As of 2017, the Belgian fiscal authorities will be able to acquire an almost complete overview of the revenues generated and deposited by Belgians in other countries who are member of the European Union.

On 13 November, the Belgian Government introduced a bill of law implementing the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and the Common Reporting Standard (CRS). The bill has still to be discussed, potentially amended and then adopted in committee and plenary session before being enacted.
The bill of law covers simultaneously FATCA and CRS (the latter being implemented pursuant to both the OECD/Council of Europe Multilateral Convention and the Directive on administrative cooperation in the field of taxation, as amended by Directive 2014/107/EU), provides further details and introduces new obligations and penalties.