Perhaps one ray of light exists for taxpayers attempting to make sense of the United Kingdom’s chaotic political backdrop – there won’t after all be yet another “emergency” summer budget. Taxpayers have no doubt had quite enough of summer budgets, autumns statements, and spring announcements, and therefore the decision by Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond to forgo a post-election fiscal statement in favor of waiting for the scheduled Budget towards the end of this year could be interpreted as a sensible move, allowing time for the dust storm to settle.
On the other hand, it could be argued that if there was ever a need for an emergency budget, it is now. For if attempting to leave the European Union with a weak Government wrought with internal divisions, and with a leader who in political terms looks increasingly like a dead woman … Read More »
The word substance has become integral to the base erosion and profit shifting project. But it’s also one that appears to be causing businesses and tax authorities the world over significant problems.
Of course, one of the core aims of BEPS is to prevent situations whereby taxpayers get away with double non-taxation. However, as the International Chamber of Commerce pointed out last week, the increased focus by revenue authorities on economic substance combined with a lack of clarity on the definition of the term across jurisdictions is leading to more cases of income being doubly taxed, rather than the other way around.
Facing the prospect of being wrongly taxed, taxpayers have little choice but to fight it out in the tax tribunals and appeals courts, which even in the most advanced countries is usually an expensive, time-consuming process, and risky if litigation … Read More »
I’m still not entirely sure whether last week’s general election in the United Kingdom was a democratic exercise, or a mass psychological experiment, so often did Prime minister Theresa May try and penetrate the electorate’s skulls with the mantra “strong and stable” in the hope they would vote Conservative. If it was, it failed. Weak and wobbly is what they voted for, if anything.
Almost needless to say, these are hardly ideal foundations on which to conduct the Brexit negotiations. Indeed, the whole idea behind the calling of the snap election was to strengthen the position of the Conservative Government, based on a healthy lead then in opinion polls, and by extension the UK’s hand at the Brexit negotiating table.
This episode heaps yet more doubt on the direction of UK tax policy. The 2017 Finance Bill has already become a casualty of the … Read More »
Ever booked a hotel room online and wondered why the “final” price is higher than the price quoted on the screen? Or gone to check out of your room only to find that your bill has mysteriously increased, even though you assiduously avoided the mini-bar, and definitely did not spirit away the bathrobe in your luggage? Well, there’s a word for it, and one with which readers of this column should be very familiar: tax.
It’s certainly no coincidence that tourism-based taxes have multiplied considerably since the financial crisis. And it is no coincidence either that such taxes have sprouted up in the eurozone’s most cash-strapped countries, and especially those with substantial tourism industries. Spain and Greece are two examples. And in Portugal, companies are starting to complain about the increasing prevalence of these “discreet taxes.”
An indication of how widespread tourist taxes … Read More »