Australia: Country-by-country, final Local files released

Australia: Country-by-country, Local files released

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) intends to release the final Local file “high level design” as part of Australia’s implementation of the country-by-country (CbC) reporting requirement. The ATO will also release a compendium explaining how it has considered comments received during consultation.

Related content

The following provides an initial discussion about the final “high level design” document. 

Format

The ATO has settled on two “tiers” of Local files:

  • A “short-form Local file” for those with sufficiently small and/or low risk international related party dealings (IRPDs).
  • A “Local file” for all other affected taxpayers

The short-form Local file will require only qualitative information regarding the local entity. The Local file will require IRPD data that is more granular than the current international dealings schedule requirements (Part A) as well as written agreements and foreign APAs and rulings for 'material' IRPDs (Part B). The Local file will be in electronic format.

Minimising duplication

An administrative solution is being developed by the ATO whereby taxpayers may choose to voluntarily file Part A of the Local file—in place of Section A of the international dealings schedule—at the time of the tax return, rather than by 12 months after the year-end. 

Differences, OECD Local file

While the Local file recommended by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is much more akin to a traditional transfer pricing documentation, the Australian Local file is more focused on collecting entity and IRPD data in an electronic format from which the ATO can run data analytics to identify transfer pricing risk(s). Existing obligations to self-assess the Australian transfer pricing rules as well as the specific Australian transfer pricing documentation requirements remain.

The final Local file will be published on the ATO website soon, with instructions to follow. The ATO has confirmed that the Master file will follow the OECD format and that it will release further information around how the Master file will need to be filed.

KPMG observation

Multinational enterprises will want to consider paying specific attention to the unique Australian CbC reporting and transfer pricing requirements when implementing their global CbC reporting strategy.

 

For more information, contact a tax professional with KPMG’s Global Transfer Pricing Services group in Australia: 

Jane Rolfe | +61 3 9288 6341 | janerolfe@kpmg.com.au 

Aaron Yeo | +61 3 9288 6024 | aaronyeo@kpmg.com.au

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