State Aid: Belgian Tax Rulings Deemed “Illegal”
The European Union recently released the following Communiqué:
“State aid: Commission concludes Belgian “Excess Profit” tax scheme illegal; around €700 million to be recovered from 35 multinational companies
Brussels, 11 January 2016
The European Commission has concluded that selective tax advantages granted by Belgium under its “excess profit” tax scheme are illegal under EU state aid rules. The scheme has benefitted at least 35 multinationals mainly from the EU, who must now return unpaid taxes to Belgium.
The Belgian “excess profit” tax scheme, applicable since 2005, allowed certain multinational group companies to pay substantially less tax in Belgium on the basis of tax rulings. The scheme reduced the corporate tax base of the companies by between 50% and 90% to discount for so-called “excess profits” that allegedly result from being part of a multinational group. The Commission’s in-depth investigation opened in February 2015 showed that the scheme derogated from normal practice under Belgian company tax rules and the so-called “arm’s length principle”. This is illegal under EU state aid rules.”
See the full Communiqué here.
Robert Robillard, Ph.D., CPA, CGA, MBA, M.Sc. Econ.
Senior Partner, DRTP Consulting Inc.
514-742-8086; robertrobillard “at” drtp.ca
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