CFE’s Tax Top 5 May 2016

 

    

30 May 2016

 

1.      Ecofin meeting: country by country reporting adopted / no agreement on ATAD

 

On 25 May 2016, the EU Ecofin Council discussed the European Commission´s Anti-Tax Avoidance Package of 28 January 2016, formally adopting the proposal including in the EU Administrative Cooperation Directive the filing of country by country reports by large multinationals to tax authorities and the automatic exchange of the reports among these. EU-based companies will already have to report from the 2016 fiscal year. Parent companies from non-EU countries have to file reports through their EU subsidiaries from the 2017 fiscal year.

This measure which implements the OECD/G20 BEPS Action 13 Recommendation into EU law had already been politically agreed at the Council meeting on 8 March; the European Parliament has expressed its support on 12 May.

 

On the proposal for an Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive (ATAD), the Dutch Council presidency had presented a new compromise proposal but no agreement could be reached. According to press reports, the switchover clause may be dropped in the course of negotiations; ministers also agreed, upon request of the UK, to request the Commission to put forward a more comprehensive proposal on hybrid mismatches by October. The next date for reaching political agreement on the proposal will be 17 June 2016.

 

The Council adopted conclusions on two other parts of the Package: the two Communications on an external strategy for effective taxation, announcing a common EU methodology for blacklisting tax havens and developing measures against these, and the recommendation on tax treaty abuse and permanent establishments (PE).

Ministers agreed to draw up a common list of tax havens in 2017; criteria should be defined by September 2016, taking into account the work of the OECD Global Forum on cooperativeness of jurisdictions.

As regards treaty abuse and PE, the Council welcomed the proposed provisions with regard to a principal purpose test and permanent establishments to be included in bilateral tax treaties agreed by a member state, stressing that it also considers limitation on benefits clauses helpful.

 

Overall

–         Press release, Outcome of the meeting: EN: see ATAD on p.3

–         Background briefing: EN

–         EurActiv article: EN

 

ATAD

–         Latest Dutch presidency compromise proposal dated 24 May: EN (other languages: link)

–         General approach: EN (other languages: link)

Country by country reporting

–         Amendment to Administrative Cooperation Directive: EN

 

Communications on external strategy for effective taxation and treaty abuse

–         Council Conclusions: EN

 

 

 

2. CJEU rules on Belgian tax on collective investment undertakings

 

On 26 May 2016, the EU Court of Justice (CJEU) rendered its judgment in the Belgian case NN (L) (C-48/15) on the taxation of an undertaking for collective investment (UCI) from Luxembourg that marketed units in Belgium. The Court found that Belgium could impose a tax on foreign UCI, if this tax is applied in a non-discriminatory way; the country did not have to take into account taxes paid by the UCI in Luxembourg. However, Belgium cannot prohibit foreign UCIs by court decision from marketing their units in Belgium if the UCI fails to comply with the obligation to pay the tax or to file the necessary declaration within a certain time period.

 

–         Judgment: EN (all EU languages)

–         Advocate-General opinion : EN (all EU languages)

 

 

3.      CJEU: Greek inheritance tax exemption for primary residence may not be limited to residents

 

On 26 May 2016, the CJEU issued its decision in the infringement case Commission v. Greece (C-244/15), confirming that Greece has breached the free movement of capital in EU and EEA law by granting an inheritance tax exemption for primary residence only to spouses and children which are EU citizens and reside in Greece.

 

–         Judgment: EN (all EU languages)

 

 

4.      CJEU: Luxembourg must issue deduction forms and give tax credit to persons receiving income from abroad

 

On 26 May 2016, the CJEU gave its decision in the Luxembourgish preliminary ruling case Charles Kohll      (C-300/15) concerning a pensioner who is resident and national of Luxembourg and receives pensions from the Netherlands; he was not granted a tax credit because as a person receiving a salary or a pension not subject to deduction at source, he did not receive the required tax deduction form. This treatment was found to infringe the free movement of workers under EU law.

 

–         Judgment: EN (all EU languages)

–         Advocate-General opinion : EN (all EU languages)

 

 

5.      CJEU rules on VAT exemption on the processing of payments by credit or debit card

 

On 26 May 2016, the CJEU delivered two judgments in UK preliminary ruling cases National Exhibition Centre (C-130/15) and Bookit (C-607/14). The Court decided that where an individual buys a ticket for a show or other event via a provider who processes the payment by debit or credit card in the name and on behalf of another entity, the VAT exemption of transactions concerning payments and transfers does not apply to the service of that provider.

 

–         Judgment in National Exhibition Center: EN (FR available)

–         Judgment in Bookit: EN (All EU languges available)

 

 

6.      EP working on report requesting new rules and sanctions for tax advisers

 

The European Parliament´s “TAXE 2” Special Committee on tax rulings and other measures similar in nature or effect, continuing the work of its predecessor which was set up in the wake of the “Lux Leaks” revelations, is working on its (non-legislative) initiative report scheduled to be adopted on 4 July 2016. On 11 May, Dutch Social Democrat MEP Jeppe Kofod and German Liberal MEP Michael Theurer presented their draft report, the deadline for amendments will be tomorrow, 31 May. For tax professionals, the draft report demands EU-wide conflict of interest rules preventing tax advisers from advising both government and private clients, and sanctions for advisers engaged with tax havens, tax evasion or aggressive tax planning.

 

–         Draft report: EN

–         Amendment proposals will probably be linked after 31 May 2016 on this site: EN

 

 

7.      Council and EP comment on VAT Action Plan

 

At its meeting on 25 May 2016, the Ecofin Council adopted conclusion on the Commission´s VAT Action Plan Communication of 7 April 2016 mentioning the request by some member states, which reportedly include Austria and the Czech Republic, to apply a general reverse charge mechanism.

This request is supported by the European Parliament ECON Committee´s draft initiative (non-legislative) report on the Action Plan presented by German Conservative MEP Werner Langen on 27 April 2016. The advisory VAT Expert Group to the European Commission has strongly opposed this idea; the Commission is not known to be in favour either.

 

–       Council conclusion on the VAT Action Plan: EN

–       Draft report by MEP Werner Langen: All EU languages

 

 

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The selection of the remitted material has been prepared by Piergiorgio Valente / Filipa Correia / Rudolf Reibel

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23 May 2016

  1. EP adopts draft directive on country-by-country reporting on taxes

On 12 May 2016, the European Parliament endorsed an amendment of the Administrative Cooperation Directive introducing country-by-country reporting of tax-related information of multinational companies and exchange of this information among tax authorities. Companies with an annual turnover over €750 million will have to communicate information about their taxes, profits and revenues to tax jurisdictions in every EU country in which they have business operations.

Political agreement by EU member states at the ECOFIN Council on this issue was already reached on 8 March. Although the Parliament is only consulted on the proposal, its opinion is a necessary step towards the final adoption by the Council which is expected at the ECOFIN meeting on 25 May 2016.

  • Link to the agenda of the ECOFIN Council: EN
  • Link to EP amendments to the draft directive EN
  1. 2. Ireland and UK divided over Commission’s decision on tax rulings

Ireland and the UK took opposite sides regarding European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager´s efforts to target certain tax rulings issued by EU member states to multinationals. According to an article published in POLITICO, Ireland supported an appeal against the Commission´s verdict calling on Luxembourg to collect €25 – 30 million in taxes from a subsidiary of Fiat. The UK backed Vestager against the Luxembourg’s appeal, to the surprise of commentators.  The country apparently also supported the Commission in an appeal by the Dutch government to collect up to €30 million in back taxes from Starbucks. The Commission recently dropped an early stage inquiry into generous UK tax arrangements for patent-holders, but is still assessing a UK tax settlement with Google.

  • Link to article in POLITICO: EN
  1. Double taxation: Advocate-General defends different treatment of foreign interest income in cases where interest deduction has been denied

Danish rules leading to double taxation by denying the exemption of interest income from a subsidiary in another EU member state are not a restriction to the freedom of establishment, according to the opinion of EU Court of Justice Advocate General Juliane Kokott, presented on 12 May 2016 in the case Masco Denmark and Damixa (C-593/14). Denmark does not allow a tax exemption on interest income if the corresponding interest deduction is denied due to thin capitalisation rules, and the subsidiary is situated in another member state; the exemption is given where the subsidiary is established in Denmark.

The AG concluded that this difference in treatment did not constitute a restriction on the freedom of establishment. Even if that were the case, the restriction could be justified based on the balanced allocation of taxing rights as well as the coherence of the tax system.

  • Link to the opinion (not yet in EN, but available in several other languages)
  1. European Commission publishes country-specific recommendations on tax policy

On 18 May 2016, the European Commission tabled country-specific recommendations in the framework of the European Semester on economic policy coordination for the next 12 to 18 months including tailored policy guidance to EU member states.

A thematic fiche on taxation features tax and revenue statistics as well as general trends and policy challenges. Recommendations explore options to improve current tax systems in order to become more-job and investment friendly while also ensuring fair contributions.  Recent tax reforms in the EU member states are also highlighted and examples cited on good practices.

In its Communication on the country-specific recommendations, the Commission highlights further growth potential by improving the performance of business services. The Commission finds that the number of restrictions in services sectors remains high in several EU member states and believes that this negatively impacts investment, growth and employment. The range, level and number of restrictions prevailing in business services and regulated professions, especially in engineering, accounting, architecture and legal services, requires attention in particular towards Belgium, Germany, Luxembourg and Austria.

  • European Semester Thematic Fiche Taxation, tax and revenue statistics: EN
  • European Semester, 2016 Recommendations thematic website: EN
  1. VAT Expert Group issues opinion criticising ideas for generalised reverse charge mechanisms

On 20 May 2016, the VAT Expert Group, an advisory body to the European Commission in which CFE is represented, has issued a statement supporting the Commission´s intention to implement the destination principle in B2B cross-border trade, proposed in the Commission´s VAT Action Plan of 7 April 2016, and to make more effective use of existing international cooperation between tax administrations to tackle VAT fraud. The statement also contains a warning against some member states pushing for a generalised reverse charge system, stating that this would risk the development of a coherent, harmonised and fraud proof VAT system; indeed such inconsistencies would create additional opportunities for fraudsters.

  • VAT Expert Group opinion: EN
  1. Commission updates basic information for micro-e-businesses

The European Commission has updated its guidance for micro-businesses supplying electronic, telecommunications and broadcasting services. Since 2015, these services are to be taxed where the recipient -a consumer or a business- resides. The updates responds to calls from  micro-enterprises that find the new rules difficult to comply with.

  • Updated guidance: EN

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The selection of the remitted material has been prepared by Piergiorgio Valente / Filipa Correia / Rudolf Reibel / Andrea Morass

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17 May 2016

1. Agreement on automatic sharing of country-by-country reporting signed by six new countries

On 12 May 2016, Canada, China, Iceland, India, Israel and New Zealand signed the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement for the automatic exchange of country-by-country reports, bringing the total number of signatories to 39 countries. The agreement aims to implement Action 13 of the BEPS Action Plan to ensure that tax administrations obtain a broader picture on how multinational enterprises structure their operations.

Moreover, on 13 May, five more jurisdictions including Panama committed to joining the automatic exchange of financial account information (OECD/G20 Common Reporting Standard, or CRS), bringing the number of CRS signatories to 101; Israel and Russia also signed the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement for the implementation of the CRS, being the 81st and 82nd signatory to that agreement.

–        Link to OECD press release, country by country reporting: EN

–        Link to OECD press release, common reporting standard: EN (ES, FR available)

–         Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on CRS: EN

–         Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on cbcr: EN

2. New applications available to ease search on case law at EU and national level

The European Commission launched a new functionality on the European e-Justice Portal, the European Case Law Identifier (ECLI). This search engine allows easier search on case law published by national and international courts and tribunals. Currently, the search engine provides access to approximately 4 million case law decisions from the EU Court of Justice (CJEU), the European Patent Office, and courts in France, Spain, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Germany, the Czech Republic and Finland. The ECLI Search Engine will be further improved in terms of coverage.

Also the CJEU launched a new multilingual application, CVRIA, for smartphones and tablets, iOS and Android (note: CVRIA, not CURIA, as on the Court’s website). The application is available in all EU languages. It has four sections:

–         ‘Case-law’ latest decisions of the Courts of the CJEU (judgments, orders and opinions);

–         ‘Press releases’: the 10 most recent press releases published by the institution;

–         ‘Judicial calendar’: hearings, readings of Opinions and deliveries of judgments scheduled for the next five weeks;

–         ‘Search’: access to all the case-law of the Court.

Links:

–        European e-Justice Portal: EN (All EU languages)

–        Direct: ECLI search engine: EN (All EU languages)

–         CVRIA app via Google store: EN

–         CVRIA app via ITunes: EN

3. CFE opinions published last week

Since 16 May, the CFE has published the following Opinion Statements:

–         PAC 1/2016 on a “Fair Taxpayer Label”: EN

–         FC 5/2016 on the VAT liability of directors: EN

–         FC 6/2016 on improving double tax dispute resolution mechanisms: EN

–         FC 7/2016 on the consequences of the CJEU judgment in case Facet et al. on the right to VAT deduction: EN

Moreover, the CFE has published Opinion Releases on the proposal for an Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive and on the OECD Final Recommendations on BEPS, summarising the key messages of CFE´s earlier Opinion Statements on these matters:

–         Opinion Release of 13 May 2016: Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive: EN

–         Opinion Releases of 17 May 2016: BEPS Final Recommendations: EN

Lastly, the CFE has made available its National Reports on tax developments in 13 European countries since September 2015:

–         CFE National Reports, Fiscal Committee, April 2016: EN

4. Six countries sign up to public register of beneficial ownership at anti-corruption summit

On 12 May 2016, the Commonwealth Secretariat hosted a major conference in London dedicated to the fight against corruption titled `Tackling Corruption Together`, gathering high-level government officials, business and civil society organisations. Forty jurisdictions agreed to exchange beneficial ownership information among governments, including a number of UK crown dependencies known as tax havens. Six countries, the UK, Afghanistan, Kenya, France, the Netherlands and Nigeria went further by committing to publish registers of beneficial owners. Six more, including Australia, were reported to consider this move in future. The UK government also announced the setting-up of an international anti-corruption coordination centre in London.

–         Link to UK government: EN

–         Link to Guardian article: EN

5. CJEU judges on VAT on services carried out by municipalities

The CJEU judged on 12 May 2016 in the Case C 520/14, Gemeente Borsele, that a regional or local authority which provides a service for the transport of schoolchildren did not carry out an economic activity and was not therefore a taxable person.

–         Link to judgement EN (available in all languages)

6. European Parliament: Vote delayed on Panama Papers special committee

In a letter of 11 May 2016, the European Parliament´s legal service proposed to delay the decision to set up a special committee on the Panama Papers leak, listing a number of reasons why the creation of such committee might lack a legal basis. The presidents of the assembly’s political groups decided therefore to delay the vote for three weeks. The mandate will probably be put to a plenary vote.

–        Link to Politico article EN

–         Legal Service EP on Draft mandate for a committee of inquiry on “Panama Papers” EN

7. OECD publishes new reports on Co-operative Compliance and tax service providers

On 13 May 2016, the OECD published a number of new reports two of which are of specific relevance for tax advisers:

The report “Co-operative Tax Compliance: Building Better Tax Control Frameworks” is a follow-up to the OECD´s 2013 report introducing the concept of “co-operative compliance” and deals with the design and operation of internal Tax Control Frameworks which is a key component in large businesses´ compliance, and with risk management of tax administrations.

The report “Rethinking Tax Services: The Changing Role of Tax Service Providers in SME Tax Compliance” contains a special focus on tax-related services provided by other operators than tax advisers or accountants, like software companies. It provides an overview of developments and new service solutions in the area of online and mobile services and machine-to-machine communication, and new ways of interaction between SMEs and tax administration, which may significantly impact on the market for accountancy and tax advice.

–         New OECD publications: EN

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The selection of the remitted material has been prepared by Piergiorgio Valente / Filipa Correia / Rudolf Reibel / Andrea Morass

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9 May 2016                                                                                                                                                   

1. CFE appointed as member of the ´Platform for Tax Good Governance´

The CFE was nominated for the second time to the Commission’s expert group “Platform for Tax Good Governance, Aggressive Tax Planning and Double Taxation”.

The Platform for Tax Good Governance assists the European Commission in developing initiatives to promote good governance in tax matters in third countries, to tackle aggressive tax planning and to identify and address double taxation. It gathers experts from all EU member states and 15 business, tax professional and civil society organisations. The Platform´s second term will end in June 2019.

The CFE will be represented by Piergiorgio Valente as main representative and Stella Raventos as alternate. A first meeting will take place on 14 June in Brussels.

–         Link to the Platform for Tax Good Governance: EN

2. Public consultation on cross-border provision of services

On 3 May 2016, the European Commission, DG Growth (formerly Internal Market) launched a public consultation dealing with administrative and regulatory barriers on cross-border services. The survey concerns “business services”, specifically mentioning accountancy. Legal advice and statutory audit are excluded. Tax advisers are not expressly mentioned, but they also fall under the EU Services Directive to which the survey refers to.

The survey is aiming at mid-sized professional firms and the factors that prevent them from expanding, looking in particular on simplifying the setting up of branches and agencies in another member state.

Essentially, it is about whether EU member states should still be able to impose certain regulatory requirements on professional firms (notably on shareholder structure, legal form, multidisciplinary activities, professional indemnity insurance requirements and services standards), whether they should exempt firms from other member states from such requirements, or whether there should be some form of harmonisation of what can be required. It is remarkable that the questionnaire also addresses domestic situations, not having a cross-border element.

The deadline is 26 July.

–         Link to the public consultation: EN (all languages available)

3. Advocate General: failure to provide VAT ID may not be the reason for refusing exemption for intra-Community supply of goods

On 6 April 2016, Advocate General Saugmandsgaard Øe of the EU Court of Justice (CJEU) provided his opinion in the case Plöckl (Case C-24/15).

German tax authorities had claimed that the requirements for exempting an intra-Community supply of goods were not met when a car was sold to a Spanish business and imposed an additional assessment, as no Spanish VAT ID number was provided.

The Advocate-General argued that the referring court had determined that no serious indication of fraud existed, all requirements for an exemption had been met, except for the provision of a VAT registration number, which is merely a formal requirement. Non-compliance with such requirement may lead to an administrative fine, but cannot be invoked to refuse the granting of an exemption.

–         Link to CJEU Advocate General’s opinion DE (available in several languages)

4. MEPs call for protection of whistle-blowers

On 4 May 2016, the Greens/European Free Alliance in the European Parliament have called on the European Commission to table a legislative proposal to protect whistle-blowers and have presented a proposal for a draft Directive for discussion. This proposal would apply to all workers in the public and private sectors and assure them protection from criminal and civil prosecution, excluding in particular sanctions from the employer. Protection should not only be granted for disclosure of criminal action, but also e.g. of facts that show, e.g., a likely negative effect on public finance. Unlike the EP´s resolution of 16 December 2015, the newly proposed text does not provide for a limitation that whistle-blowers should firstly report to public authorities and only go public where these authorities fail to take action.

–         Link to Draft for discussion on whistle-blower protection: EN

5. UN publishes data on financial flows through tax havens

On 3 May 2016, the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) published a report illustrating that investment flows through offshore financial hubs, including offshore financial centres and special purpose entities (SPEs), have declined but remain sizable, and were very volatile in 2015.

As the report points out, the proportion of investment income booked in low tax, often offshore, jurisdictions is high and possibly growing. It further states that the disconnect between the locations of income generation and productive investment results in substantial fiscal losses and highlights a pressing need to create greater coherence among tax and investment policies at the global level.

–         Link to the analysis EN

6. Panama Papers: Release of searchable database on 9 May

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists announced the release of a searchable database on 9 May 2016 with information on more than 200,000 offshore entities that are part of the Panama Papers investigation. This database including information about companies, trusts, foundations and funds is expected to be the largest-ever data release on secret offshore companies.

–         Link to database published on 9 May at 2 p.m. EN

 

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The selection of the remitted material has been prepared by Piergiorgio Valente / Filipa Correia / Rudolf Reibel / Andrea Morass

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2 May 2016                                                                                                                                             

1.      FATCA: Panama signs agreement / Competent Authority Agreement with Slovakia published

On 27 April 2016, Panama and the United States signed an intergovernmental agreement to improve international tax compliance according to the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).

FATCA represents an US initiative, calling on financial institutions around the world to provide information on the accounts of Americans abroad in order to fight tax evasion.

With the signing of this Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA), exchange of information about customers to which FATCA applies will take place between the tax administrations, but not directly between the Foreign Financial Institutions and the Internal Revenue Service of the United States.

On 26 April 2016, the US Internal Revenue Service also released the text of the competent authority arrangement signed between the US and Slovakia, following up on the signing of the US-Slovak FATCA implementation agreement of 31 July 2015.

–        FATCA intergovernmental agreement US/Panama 27 April 2015: EN

–        FATCA implementation agreement US/Slovakia, 26 April 2016: EN

2.      European Commission takes Germany to court over infringement of VAT rules for travel agencies

On 28 April 2016, the European Commission released its April infringements’ package including an announcement to bring Germany before the EU Court of Justice (CJEU) on the reason of not correctly applying the specific VAT regime for travel agencies. A previous call was sent already in 2015, but Germany did not react accordingly. The Directive requires that travel agencies must use their profit margin as the VAT tax base, irrespective of the client, in order to create fair competition conditions. This rule aims to create a level playing field for providers and to eliminate distortions of competition. So far, Germany applied this system exclusively to travel services supplied to private users. German authorities also allow travel agencies to set a single profit margin for all package travel supplied during a tax declaration period.

–         Press release, 28.4.2016: EN (FR available)

 

3.      Judgement of the Court in VAT Case Het Oudeland Beheer

On 27 April 2016, the CJEU delivered its judgment in the Dutch preliminary ruling case C-128/14, Het Oudeland Beheer on the VAT taxable amount concerning immovable property:

The Court stated that where land and a building under construction have been acquired with a right in rem allowing its holder to use the immovable property, the value of that right in rem to be taken in account in calculating the taxable amount of a supply, corresponds to the value of the amount to be paid in consideration each year for the remainder of the long lease granting the right in rem.

The value of this right and the cost of completing the building built on that land may be included in the taxable amount of a supply where the taxable person has already paid VAT on that value and that cost, but also deducted the VAT immediately and in full.

–         Link to CJEU Case C-128/14: EN (all languages)

4.      Commission calls on Germany to amend its VAT rules on cross-border road passenger transport

On April 28, 2016 the European Commission sent a request to Germany to amend its VAT rules on cross-border road passenger transport. Germany currently applies VAT rules that treat short cross-border passenger transport services (less than 10km) as a foreign service for tax purposes, meaning that these services are not taxable in Germany.

EU law however requires that passenger transport services must be taxed where the transport takes place and must be proportionate to the distances covered. According to the European Commission, the rule applied in Germany is not allowed under the VAT Directive and cannot be considered as a simplification measure since it is not intended to simplify the collection of the VAT, but rather not to collect VAT at all.

The Commission’s request takes the form of a reasoned opinion. The Commission may refer this issue to the EU Court of Justice within two months.

–         Press release: EN

5.      Advocate General´s opinion on Riskin and Timmermans on tax credit in EU and third country situation

On 12 April 2016, CJEU Advocate General Kokott provided her opinion in the case Riskin and Timmermans Case C-176/15). The Court of First Instance of Liège (Belgium) had requested a preliminary ruling.

The case refers to the issue whether a member state may treat investment in companies from third countries more favourable than investment in companies from other member states.

The Advocate General concluded that the free movement of capital does not preclude national legislation which, because of an obligation arising from a double tax agreement with a third state, generally credits withholding tax withheld by a third state on dividends from companies established in that state with the advance tax levied on those dividends at national level from their resident shareholders, whereas, in the case of dividends paid by companies established in another member state, it makes that credit subject to additional conditions.

–         Link to DE (other languages – not EN)

6.      Commission refers Greece to ECJ over condition of reciprocity for granting preferential tax rates for bequests

On 17 February 2016, the European Commission referred Greece to the CJEU (Case C-98/16), requesting the Court to declare that, by the adoption and retention in force of legislation which provides that a preferential inheritance tax rate for bequests of which the beneficiaries are non-profit-making bodies established in other Member States of the EU/EEA is subject to a condition of reciprocity, Greece had failed to fulfil its obligations under the EU and EEA provisions on the free movement of capital.

–        Link to case C-98/16: EN; all languages

7.      Commission calls on France to end discriminatory treatment of dividends from non-resident subsidiaries

The European Commission sent a reasoned opinion to France on 28 April 2016, calling for compliance with a judgment of the CJEU (Case C-310/09 Accor) from 2011 which specified that the French law on withholding tax was against EU law, being too restrictive. The Commission maintains that the subsequent restrictive judgment of the Conseil d´Etat, the French Supreme Court, is not in line with EU law as it does not take into account tax paid by sub-subsidiaries in other EU countries, as tax credits were systematically limited to one third of the dividend redistributed in France by non-resident subsidiaries, and formal and disproportionate evidence-based requirements were imposed. The Commission’s request takes the form of a reasoned opinion. In the absence of a satisfactory response within two months, the Commission may refer France to the CJEU.

–         Press release: EN

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The selection of the remitted material has been prepared by Piergiorgio Valente / Filipa Correia / Rudolf Reibel / Andrea Morass

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