Rush of Tax Treaties in December

December 17, 2009 International Tax CooperationTaxation in CanadaTaxation in ChinaTaxation in EUTaxation in FranceTaxation in GreeceTaxation in IrelandTaxation in NetherlandsTaxation in New ZealandTaxation in SingaporeTaxation in SwitzerlandTaxation in UK

UK/Malaysia Double Taxation Agreement protocol signingIncreasing fiscal transparency was an important issue in the economic and political spectrum of the 2009 year. With only a few weeks remaining in 2009, December happened to be one of the most active month of the passing year, with Governments around the globe completing efforts made in negotiations of Double Taxation Agreements (DTA) and Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEA).

In an unprecedented step, Switzerland wishes to cease ratification of its DTA with France in protest at the French authorities’ handling of account data stolen from HSBC in Geneva. On December 9th, Eric Woerth, French Budget Minister, confirmed that the French Government had paid €500 million to a former HSBC-Switzerland employee who provided them with details on 130,000 accounts...

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Chile Invited to be 31st OECD Member

December 16, 2009 International Tax CooperationTaxation in Chile

President of ChileOn December 15th, Chile was invited to become a member of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Chile will become the 31st member nation of the OECD, and only the second country in Latin America, after Mexico, being a member since 1994. In 2007 the OECD initiated accession negotiations with Chile, Estonia, Israel, the Russian Federation and Slovenia. So far, throughout the two years of negotiations and reviews by 20 OECD Committees, only Chile has fully met the organization’s requirements and standards, and modified the country’s legislations on tax information exchanges and corporate governance. Slovakia was the last member to be accepted into the OECD in 2001.

Announcing the OECD decision, Angel Gurría, OECD Secretary-General, said “…this is a place where Chil...

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Global Business Confidence is Improving

December 15, 2009 Taxation in ChinaTaxation in IndiaTaxation in UKTaxation in USA

Freefall Friday: $84b - worst day in 21 yearsThe world is still suffering from an economic slump, but confidence and business outlook across the globe is beginning to see a marked improvement.

According to research by international law firm Eversheds, published on December 14th, there is a resurgence in business confidence and future outlook across key global economic centres, and the Eastern markets are showing the most significant improvements. The report engaged 600 senior executives to show the effect of the economic downturn and its results on their confidence in London, New York, Shanghai, Mumbai and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The study reports that executives in Shanghai, UAE and Mumbai have highest levels of confidence for the next 12 months, though all respondents believe that New York will continue to be the most signi...

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First Views on UK Bonus Tax

December 14, 2009 International Tax CooperationTaxation in EUTaxation in FranceTaxation in GermanyTaxation in UKTaxation in USA

Summit press conferenceThe first opinions and reviews have begun to be voiced, both internationally and within the UK, discussing details of a new tax on banking sector bonuses. As previously reported, on December 9th the Chancellor Alistair Darling in his Pre-Budget Report revealed that a new levy of 50 percent, will be charged on discretionary bonuses exceeding £25,000.

The extraordinary levels of bonuses in the banking industry, especially during times of financial turmoil has already been the subject of political and economical disputes for several months. The final decision announced by the Chancellor, and emerging details, have sparked intense debate. Although the idea is now garnering increasing support from international leaders...

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UK Pre-Budget Report Delivered

December 10, 2009 Taxation in UK

G20 meeting, St. Andrews, ScotlandOn December 9th, Alastair Darling, Chancellor of the Exchequer, gave the 2009 Pre-Budget Report (PBR), an economical forecast required to be delivered at the end of each year by the HM Treasury to the the country’s Parliament. This year, cutting the country’s budget deficit was the key priority, clearly indicated by the Chancellor and by debates raised by the PBR.

Reduction of Government spending in select non-priority areas, and raising taxes on middle and high-income earners are the financial engines which stand behind the proposed plans of economic recovery. The most controversial and widely discussed measures revealed in the PBR are a tax on bonuses, and a rise in National Insurance Contribution (NIC) payments.

Effective from December 9th, any bonus scheme in the banking industry pa...

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