Businesses seek 'global tax clarity'

By Steven Fullerton

6 August 2015

A recent survey suggests a large number of global businesses are seeking clarity on what constitutes acceptable tax planning.

A majority of global businesses would pay more taxes if there was greater clarity from authorities on what is acceptable, according to a poll.

A survey of 2,580 businesses in 35 economies suggested a desire for clearer rules on cross border tax transactions but pessimism that an effective global system can be implemented.

The Grant Thornton International Business Report (IBR) said 75 per cent of business leaders supported more global co-operation and guidance, even if this narrowed opportunities to reduce cross border tax liabilities. This was up from 53 per cent in a similar poll last year.

However, the findings also suggested pessimism that new rules implemented through the Office for Economic Co-operation and Development's Base Erosion Profits Shifting (BEPS) project would prove effective, with just 23 per cent believing they would. This was down one percentage point on last year's poll.

There was greater support for unilateral actions by individual countries, with 71 per cent backing action by their own governments to tackle loss of tax revenue.

Francesca Lagerberg, global leader for tax services at Grant Thornton, said: "The ball is very firmly in [the authorities] court to provide the clear lines that businesses are requesting. The results provide more evidence that clarity is needed in the complex world of cross border tax transactions"


  • Tax

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