KPMG's Week in Tax: 30 November - 4 December 2015

KPMG reports of tax news, 30 November - 4 December

The European Commission announced its decision to launch a “state aid” investigation into tax rulings granted by the tax authorities in Luxembourg to a company that is a member of a U.S.-based multinational taxpayer group.

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Europe

Reports of other tax news from Europe include the following:

  • The government of the Netherlands announced that it will appeal an October 2015 decision of the European Commission that an advance pricing agreement (APA) concluded between a corporate taxpayer and the Dutch tax authorities qualifies as “forbidden state aid.”
  • The EU Parliament passed a resolution relating to recommendations that profits are to be taxed in the EU Member State where the profits are generated. Other recommendations include country-by-country reporting and the adoption of a “common consolidated corporate tax base” (CCCTB) within the EU.
  • A report that addresses aggressive tax planning and promotes tax transparency was approved by a permanent committee of the EU Parliament. The report includes recommendations for transparency, and will now be subject to a vote by the European Parliament on 16 December 2015. If approved, the European Commission will have to respond to the recommendations within three months.
  • Draft legislation in Poland would impose a tax on “large format retail trade”—that is, a tax on trade facilities (stores) that have trading space exceeding 250 square meters.

United States

  • Congress passed a conference agreement for H.R. 22, the “highway bill,” that extends authorization for spending from the highway trust fund and other related funds. The legislation extends through 30 September 2022, a variety of highway-related taxes such as the taxes imposed upon gasoline, diesel fuel and kerosene, and certain tires; and extends the heavy vehicle use tax through 30 September 2023. The legislation is now pending action by the president.
  • The U.S. Defense Department, General Services Administration, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration jointly released an interim rule that generally prohibits the federal government from entering into a contract with any corporation having a delinquent federal tax liability or felony conviction under federal law.

FATCA / CRS

  • The Dutch Ministry of Finance published a draft decree for implementing the common reporting standard (CRS); the decree includes the identification and reporting requirements contained in the CRS for reporting financial institutions.
  • The New Zealand Inland Revenue released draft guidance on the application of the FATCA regime to trusts, and a step-by-step guide for determining the FATCA status of New Zealand trusts that are not U.S. persons.
  • In Denmark, an administrative ordinance related to CRS was issued.
  • In Portugal, the FATCA reporting deadline for Portuguese financial institutions has been extended to 31 December 2015.
  • The Mauritius Revenue Authority released draft guidance concerning implementation of the CRS.

Americas

  • In Canada, employers that offer registered pension plans to their employees need to prepare to meet their upcoming 31 December 2015 obligations under the GST/HST and QST pension plan rules.    
  • In Mexico, following the October 2015 publication of new measures for “foreign exempt pension funds,” the Mexican tax authorities issued a new general rule and then subsequently stated informally that transition rules and additional clarifications regarding the tax exemption will be released before the end of 2015, but that for control and transparency purposes, the intention is not to allow multi-level structures.

Trade & Customs

  • A “data portal” launched by the U.S. Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) provides a resource of aggregate information on licensing and export data trends.
 
Read these and other items reported this week on the TaxNewsFlash webpages.

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