Strategizing International Tax Best Practices – by Keith Brockman

BEPS: Indirect tax impact

EY’s Global Tax Alert highlights the indirect tax consequences resulting from final guidance of the BEPS Action Items:

http://www.ey.com/Publication/vwLUAssets/OECDs_recommendations_on_BEPS_project_has_wider_indirect_tax_implications/$FILE/2015G_CM5836_Indirect_OECDs%20recommendations%20on%20BEPS%20project%20has%20wider%20indirect%20tax%20implications.pdf

Key observations:

  • Interaction of Article 1 (Digital Economy) and Article 7 (PE) may create a wider gap for findings of a indirect tax “fixed establishment” and a direct tax “permanent establishment” (PE), although some countries do not respect such distinction.  Thus , business models merit a review for such changes.
  • Article 8 (Intangibles) set forth changes in allocation and valuation that may affect customs valuations.
  • Actons 8-10 (transfer pricing) may invite additional focus by tax authorities on VAT/GST and customs.
  •  Action 13 (country-by-country reporting) may invite scrutiny of indirect taxes.

The focus of BEPS has been on direct taxes, while its impact will now be measured for purposes of indirect taxes.  Thus, a BEPS review should encompass direct and indirect tax effects, including VAT/GST and customs.  

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