Italian Tax Amnesty Approved, Judged Risky

October 7, 2009 Offshore BankingTax HavensTaxation in Italy  No comments

The newest Italian Tax Amnesty Program has been written into law, yet is judged to be a risk to the country by Fitch Ratings.

Italy, which according to an Associazione Contribuenti Italiani and Klrs Network of Business Ethics survey has EU’s highest levels of tax evasion, has approved its third tax amnesty program in eight years. The 2nd of October saw the Italian parliament pass the tax amnesty proposal with 270 affirmative and 250 negative votes. It was signed into law by Giorgio Napolitano, President of the Italian Republic, on the 3rd of October.

The tax amnesty program proposed to allow the repatriation or relocation of offshore held funds with protection from prosecution, in exchange for a 5% fine on the value of the funds...

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UK Conservative Party Promising Tax Cuts

October 6, 2009 Taxation in UK  No comments

The UK Conservative Party has announced a proposal under which taxes would be cut for firms creating new jobs. Hints have also been given regarding the cut of UK’s 50% top personal tax bracket.

George Osborne, UK Conservative Party member and Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, stated on the 5th of October that under a Conservative Party government, employers would not be required to pay National Insurance contributions for two years. Cutting the levy, which amounts to 12.8% of an employee’s salary, is estimated to ultimately cost the Government £250 million. Funding for this move would come from budget cuts in other areas, although exact details will be provided at the Conservative Party Conference, October 8th.

The tax exemption is applicable only to newly created businesses, and on...

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UK Scrapping International Issuance Tax

October 5, 2009 Taxation in UK  No comments

Following a European Court of Justice (ECG) ruling, the UK Government has ceased levying 1.5% on all shares issued or transferred to a clearance service by British companies, internationally.

The 1st of October saw the ECG rule against the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), saying that the 1.5% Stamp Duty Reserve Tax (SDRT) is against European Community Law. The tax was levied on British companies which issued or transferred securities through a clearance service within the EU or the US. Typically such a situation would arise in merger or takeover situations. Estimates have placed the annual income figure from the SDRT to the British Government at over £10 million, though the HMRC have refused to confirm such figures.

The ECG ruling came as part of court action taken up by British-based HSBC, w...

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Tax Whistblowing on the Rise in US

October 2, 2009 Taxation in USA  No comments

Figures released by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) show a significant increase in the number of American citizens providing information on underpaid taxes of other’s.

The IRS Whisltleblower Office, in its Annual Report to Congress, released October 1st, has stated that 1,246 individual cases have been brought forward throughout the 2008 fiscal year with information regarding tax evaders and individuals committing significant levels of tax fraud. Of the 1,246 cases brought forward, 994 made specific allegations regarding the amount of tax evaded, within these, 228 concern tax underpayments exceeding US$10 million, and 64 cases involve tax liabilities of over US$100 million.

The IRS has had provisions for whistleblowing since 1867...

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India Expanding Gift Tax

October 1, 2009 Taxation in India  No comments

India’s Government is expanding its gift taxation laws to include a larger lists of items, not just cash.

According to India’s Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT), from the 1st of October, new tax rules will take effect mandating that any and all gifts received, valued at over Rs. 50,000, will be required to be declared and taxed by the receiver. Since the 1st of April 2006, cash gifts of Rs. 50,000 were subject to a tax liability, but the regulation has now been expanded to include land and buildings, shares and securities, jewellery, drawings, paintings, archaeological collections and other works of art . The value of the gift must be disclosed in the 2010-11 tax assessment year and the following years...

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