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江苏省国家税务局2016-2018年度国际税收遵从管理规划
发布日期:2016-08-09 18:08 浏览次数: 字体:[ ]

江苏省国家税务局文件 

苏国税发〔2016125 


 

江苏省国家税务局

2016-2018年度国际税收遵从管理规划

 

当前,国际税改已进入后BEPS时代,国际税收规则的巨大变化和税收透明度的急剧增强对跨国公司的经营和税务机关的管理都带来极大挑战。江苏省国税局倡导税企之间合作遵从,提出了打造国际税收透明度示范区、实现税收管理现代化和国际化的工作目标。在发布《江苏省国税局2014-2015年度国际税收遵从管理规划》获得企业和各界肯定的基础上,结合国际税收规则的新变化和国家税务总局在国际税收管理方面的新要求,拟定《江苏省国税局2016-2018年度国际税收遵从管理规划》,从研究与观察的角度,提出一些看法和认识,供企业关注与参考。

一、跨境税收风险控制应纳入公司治理和内部控制

BEPS报告提出,企业应将税务治理和纳税遵从作为企业治理和风险管理的重要内容。国际权威机构多年的调查表明,跨境交易特别是关联交易是跨国公司面临的最主要税收风险。G20税改大大提高了社会各界对跨国公司逃避税的关注,降低跨境税收风险不仅关乎企业经营风险和成本,而且关乎企业社会道德和形象。为此,我们建议跨国纳税人:(1)将跨境交易税收风险控制纳入公司治理和内部控制,董事会应制定税务风险管理策略,统筹内部各层级、各部门共同做好风险防范;(2)涉及集团内的关联交易定价、跨境业务重组、离岸架构设计等重大事项,应经董事会审议集体讨论决策;(3)企业可以委托中介机构提供专业服务,但并不因此改变企业对涉税行为法律责任和后果的承担。

二、充分考虑中国特殊因素对利润的贡献

BEPS行动计划明确指出,地域特殊因素是可比性分析要素之一,跨国公司全球利润分配中应充分考虑地域特殊因素对利润的贡献。为此,我们提醒跨国公司关注以下中国特殊因素:(1)优良的公共基础设施。中国经济的重要特征是投资驱动,多年来,中国政府对基础设施和公共服务设施投入巨大,尤其是沿海地区公共基础设施的水准已不亚于欧美发达国家。税收在本质上是对公共设施和公共服务的付费,良好的公共产品有助于企业经营效益的提升,跨国公司在集团利润分配中应对此加以重视和考量;(2)巨大型中国市场。中国人口众多且中产阶层快速崛起,拥有巨大的市场和消费群体,这一市场的庞大性和快速增长性具有全球独有性和其他中小发展中国家不可比拟性。在中国占有较大市场份额的跨国公司应充分考虑并量化巨大型市场因素对集团利润的贡献;(3)高附加值劳务。中国从事研发、软件设计等高附加值劳务的技术人员成长迅速、人数庞大、种类齐全、性价比高,不少跨国公司的中国成员企业承担了集团研发活动,但高附加值劳务人员的薪酬与发达国家相比明显偏低,由此带来的成本节约需予以考量。税务机关在转让定价调查、预约定价和双边磋商中将会充分考虑中国特殊因素对利润的贡献。江苏省国税局对以下两个“一高一低”的情况将重点关注:一是跨国公司中国成员企业的销售收入、资产、高附加值劳务人数占集团比例高,而利润与税收占集团比例低;二是集团来源于中国市场的销售和利润占比高,而留在中国成员企业的利润和税收占比低。

三、企业职能风险承担与利润分配应一致

BEPS报告强调,税收要与经济行为和价值创造相一致,经济实质要与法律形式相一致,而企业经济活动和价值创造的直接表现就是其履行的职能和承担的风险。从江苏情况来看,多年以来跨国公司对在华子公司职能定位上存在以下问题:一是任意性,强调法律形式,忽视经济实质,不符合独立交易原则;二是不真实性,尽管中国市场在集团价值创造中的重要性不断加强,本土化的研发、营销职能不断增加,集团对此认识不足,强调总部研发、营销的重要性和法律形式的重要性,忽视在华成员企业的经济实质和价值创造的作用;三是滞后性,对国际税收规则和中国国际税收立法的变动不敏感、缺乏深入研究,职能定位不根据变化情况调整,多年不变,严重滞后,酿成风险。为此,我们建议跨国公司:(1)认真审视在华成员企业在经营活动中实际履行的职能和承担的风险,据实做出企业职能和风险的准确定位,不能主观做出与实质不符的定位;(2)动态审视在华子公司经营活动的变化,伴随集团业务的发展或重组,在华子公司的职能风险可能已经发生变化,增加了研发或营销职能,不能固守旧制,仍定位为“两头在外”的契约制造商,人为给予低成本加成回报,应根据实际情况调整企业定位和利润归属;(3)职能风险的调整应考虑相应补偿,如在华子公司前期承担了大量研发或营销活动,在即将进入后续收益期时,集团将该职能剥离到其他关联企业,则该职能调整应按独立交易原则加以审视,考虑对前期职能承担的补偿。

四、对无形资产本地化研发和受托研发给予合理回报

BEPS《无形资产转让定价报告》将开发、提升、维护、保护和利用并列为创造无形资产价值的五大环节,对无形资产价值创造的贡献成为分享无形资产超额利润的依据。实践中,中国成员企业在集团原有技术基础上进行本地化的改造、升级、拓展,或者接受集团委托进行研发活动,均可能构成无形资产价值创造。为此,提醒跨国纳税人:(1)本土化研发或受托研发即使是在总部总体决策指导下,仍有具体决策、风险承担、资产使用、重要人员投入等特征,在价值创造中发挥特定作用。总部决策应获取应有利润,但不应忽视本地化或受托研发对无形资产价值的贡献,更不能仅靠法律形式人为将超额利润归集到集团内某一公司,特别是位于低税地的公司;(2)受托研发不是一般性集团内劳务,不能仅按低成本加成率予以回报,要结合研发人员投入、研发成果利用以及研发中的成本节约等因素,对受托研发活动给予充分补偿;(3)仅拥有无形资产的法律所有权或仅提供资金,未承担相关风险、履行相应职能的企业,只能按独立交易原则获取与之相应的补偿,不能享有无形资产的超额回报。

五、重视业务重组经济实质

跨国纳税人的全球业务重组日渐频繁,其中不少涉及中国成员企业职能和相关资产的调整。根据我国企业所得税法规定,集团业务重组应具有合理商业目的和经济实质,以避免被税务机关重新定性而做出纳税调整的风险。为此,提醒跨国纳税人:(1)业务重组应基于合理商业目的,不应以获取税收利益为唯一目的或主要目的,如人为设置中间架构、增加交易环节等;(2)业务重组应有公司内部完整决策程序和过程资料相佐证,包括董事会决议、内部备忘录、重组评估报告、重组合同、补充协议、收付款凭证、与相关交易方的沟通记录等相关资料;(3)业务重组应有实质性的功能、风险或资产转移,合同形式与实际执行相符,重组后的各方利润归属应与新的资产、职能和风险配置格局相一致。

六、基于价值贡献适用适当的转让定价方法

BEPS报告指出转让定价结果应与价值创造相一致,强调在做好关联交易各方功能和风险分析的基础上确定符合独立交易原则的定价。实践中,随着跨国公司全球化发展,一些行业的企业集中度非常高,可比信息匮乏,运用传统的转让定价方法难度较大。BEPS行动计划提出,在坚持独立交易原则的基础上,可以运用其他方法。我们根据近年来转让定价调查和APA实践以及与部分跨国公司形成的共识,建议跨国纳税人调整思维定势,根据实际情况尝试基于集团全球价值链分析的转让定价方法,具体可分为三个步骤:(1)充分占有信息,包括集团转让定价全球文档、国别报告、商业数据库、内部财务信息等,加强集团内部的沟通,充分了解相关信息的实质;(2)依据占有的信息,分析集团价值链的整体营运及获利情况,梳理价值链上各项职能的承担者和履行情况,识别价值创造的核心要素,如无形资产、固定资产、人员、市场等;(3)按照已确定的某个或某组核心要素指标(如资产、销售、费用、成本等),将价值链上的总利润在各职能及其承担者之间进行分配,确保利润分配结果与价值链上各方的职能和风险承担相匹配。分析应坚持独立交易原则,税企双方应充分沟通形成共识,避免简单运用公式分配法进行利润归属。

七、避免激进的税收筹划 

G20税改达成的重要共识是按照经济实质征税、避免双重不征税,并督促各国审视和调整本国税法中存在的漏洞。为此,提醒跨国纳税人,避免设计和使用以规避纳税为主要目的的激进税收筹划,比如:(1)在低税地设立壳公司,仅满足法律形式但不从事实质性经济活动,将股权、债权、无形资产归集到该公司,获取收益时一方面享受税收协定减免税优惠,另一方面享受设立地对境外所得免税优惠;(2)设立多层境外持股架构,形式上转变为外国企业,但实质上实际管理机构仍在国内,籍此规避中国税收管辖权;(3)通过拆分合同、签订三方合同,隐藏或减少非居民劳务,规避常设机构的认定,在包含设备进口、技术服务、技术使用等多项内容的总合同中,人为调整或混淆项目收费,减少应税项目金额。税务机关将按照实质重于形式的原则做出纳税调整,防止税基侵蚀和利润转移。

八、避免出现被列为高风险的几种错配

从税务机关风险管理的角度,我们告知跨国纳税人,税务机关特别关注以下现象中可能存在的错配:(1)集团利润趋势与中国成员企业利润趋势不一致。集团整体盈利较好而在华成员企业微利甚至亏损;(2)集团社会形象和税收贡献不一致。集团在国内外享有盛誉,而在华成员企业在当地几乎没有或很少有税收贡献;(3)价值贡献和利润分配不一致。在华成员企业是集团重要生产基地甚至伴有研发职能,中国市场构成集团重要市场份额,但在华成员企业仅获得很少的集团利润占比;(4)高新技术企业定位与税收表现不一致。享受高新技术企业优惠而处于低利状态,同时向境外支付大额特许权使用费;(5)经营规模变化与经营效益变化不一致。在华成员企业经营规模稳定甚至不断扩大,但长期处于微利甚至亏损状态;(6)投入与产出不一致。在华成员企业长期对外支付特许权使用费或其他集团费用,但无形资产的使用和高额的劳务购买没有带来经营成效,反而长期处于微利或亏损状态。

九、提高同期资料准备质量

BEPS《转让定价同期资料和分国信息批露指引》不仅要求纳税人准备本地文档,而且要求纳税人提供主文档和国别报告,对跨国公司信息披露提出了更高要求。实践中,很多纳税人同期资料信息与申报信息不一致、职能定位与实际情况不一致、可比对象选择主观性强、特殊因素调整缺乏合理依据、文档准备模板化等问题相当突出。有些企业的管理层和业务人员、财税人员对独立交易原则、可比对象、转让定价方法等缺乏基本认识,作为子公司既无定价决策权,在同期资料准备中又缺乏与总部的有效沟通,造成同期资料信息与总部全球文档信息产生矛盾。为此,我们提醒跨国纳税人高度重视同期资料准备质量:(1)密切关注即将出台的同期资料新规,按要求真实、完整、准确地提供各项信息,统筹好本地文档、国别报告、主文档的信息准备,避免错漏、矛盾和缺失;(2)同期资料准备质量将作为企业风险等级评定的重要依据,税务机关定期对同期资料开展审核,对质量较差的企业提高风险评级,作为转让定价调查的重点关注对象;(3)中介机构应发挥专业技能,帮助企业提高同期资料质量,对参与企业同期资料制作且质量较差的中介机构及其从业人员,税务机关将在一定范围内予以通报;(4)跨国公司总部应按照税收透明度原则、BEPS报告相关指引以及中国税收征管法的要求,加强对跨国关联交易的风险控制,提高在华成员企业同期资料质量,帮助中国成员企业向税务机关披露全球架构、全球定价原则等信息。

十、重视申报、备案类法律义务的遵从

依法行政推进税收法定原则的落实,不仅要求税务机关按照职责清单规范执法,对纳税人自主申报也提出更高要求,纳税人应对申报、备案的合规性承担法律责任。为此,从国际税收的角度提醒跨国纳税人:(1)及时履行申报、备案义务,包括关联交易申报、非居民税款扣缴申报、非居民合同备案、对外支付备案、享受协定待遇备案、特殊税务处理备案、间接财产转让报告、境外投资报告等,均应按规定时限办理;(2)申报、备案的信息和数据应真实完整反映企业经营情况,税务机关会通过系统内外信息比对,审核发现申报、备案信息存在的重大错漏;(3)申报、备案的遵从情况影响企业风险等级评定,税务机关风险管理起始于申报、备案信息的分析、比对,对存在重大缺失和差错、政策适用不当的纳税人,将启动风险应对。

十一、充分认识《多边税收征管互助公约》、CRSFATCA实施对企业的影响

随着《多边税收征管互助公约》、《金融账户涉税信息自动交换标准》(CRS)和《海外账户税收合规法案》(FATCA)的陆续生效和实施,各国在税收征管实践层面将国际间协作突破性地拓展到金融账户信息的批量自动交换,跨国企业在全球的账户持有者(个人或企业)名称、地址、账户余额、分类统计的股息、利息、资产性收入等信息将陆续向税务机关透明,金融账户信息的自动交换将极大挤压以往利用信息不透明进行跨境逃避税筹划的空间。为此,提醒跨国纳税人:(1)充分了解《公约》、CRSFATCA的具体内容并分析其对企业的潜在影响,规范好与股息、利息和资产性收入相关的金融账户管理;(2)研究跨国经营涉及的相关国家税法,按照G20税改新规—征税权与经济活动实质相一致的原则,规范好集团利润和税源在国家间的分配;(3)具有隐匿收入或将利润堆积在境外离岸账户等潜在风险的公司或个人,应按国内税法要求进行申报或调整。税务机关将运用国际征管协作手段,统筹企业所得税、个人所得税管理,开展比对分析,加大对跨境逃避税的管理力度。

十二、树立全球价值链布局中的国际税收遵从意识

经济全球化使各国经济税收利益的联系更加紧密,跨境交易监管在各国税收管理中日益受到重视。为此,提醒跨国纳税人,特别是“走出去”企业,在全球价值链布局中树立国际税收遵从意识:(1)“走出去”企业在居民国对全球所得负有纳税义务,应充分认识母公司在中国的法律责任和遵从风险,不应仅通过法律形式人为将母公司职能调整到缺乏经济实质的境外子公司,规避境内纳税义务;(2)从商务与税务相结合的角度,统筹本国与东道国投资和税收法律法规,在资本输出、经营、回收阶段,考虑不同投资形式的税收成本,充分做好投资规划; (3)“走出去”企业跨境关联交易应遵循独立交易原则,母公司向境外输出专有技术、商标等无形资产使用权,应合理收取无形资产使用费,确定使用的关联交易定价要符合母国和投资国的税法规定,规避反避税调查风险;(4)母公司将无形资产所有权全部或部分转移到境外的,应遵循国际惯例和通行做法,对无形资产价值进行评估,根据评估作价依法进行税务处理;(5)遇到双重征税、境外涉税争端或不公正税收待遇,可以运用税收协定启动相互磋商程序,维护自身权益。

十三、增强税企沟通和信息透明度

G20税改倡导提高透明度,解决信息不对称导致的税收问题。税企间的良好沟通和信息透明,既是纳税人自我遵从的重要表现,也是合作遵从的核心所在。为此,建议跨国纳税人:(1)主动加强与税务机关的沟通,涉及集团统一规划、全球部署事项,在华成员企业尽可能邀请集团总部派员参与税企沟通,提高沟通效果,为税务机关做出正确判断、采取合理税务处理提供支持;(2)对拒绝沟通、不履行资料提供义务的纳税人,税务机关可通过跨国税收情报交换或第三方渠道,获取和查证相关信息,视情节轻重依法采取行政处罚、核定征收等措施;(3)特别要提醒的是,在税收检查中依照法定程序要求企业提供证据,企业依法应当提供而拒不提供,在诉讼程序中提供的证据,中国法院一般不予采纳。

十四、关注江苏国税跨境税源管理举措

2016年起,国际税改进入成果转化和实践的后BEPS时代,国地税征管体制改革也将进入实施阶段,江苏省国税局将进一步转变观念与方式,提升技术手段,推动业务创新,提高对跨国纳税人监管水平:(1)开展大数据分析,整合企业申报信息、商业数据库信息以及外管、商务等第三方信息,运用数据仓库技术开展风险筛查,监控跨国企业利润水平变动,结合企业内控情况、沟通意识、信息透明度、同期资料准备质量等,确定风险等级,聚焦高风险企业开展风险应对;(2)强化反避税调查,抓住职能承担、价值链定位、经济实质与税收贡献相匹配的核心,对转让定价、资本弱化、受控外国公司、利用无形资产或金融工具转移利润等跨境避税行为加大调查力度;(3)建立高层沟通渠道,省局将加强与跨国公司集团总部的直接沟通,传递跨境税源管理案件的观点及处理意见,使集团总部参与信息披露和税企对话,解决信息不对称和决策环节多、耗时长、应对效果不佳的问题;(4)积极实践国际税改成果,重点关注中国特殊因素的利润贡献、无形资产本土化的利润回报、价值贡献分配法的适用、协定滥用、人为规避常设机构等热点、难点问题,回应纳税人关切,丰富中国观点维护国家税收权益。

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2016-2018

Compliance Plan on International Tax Administration

 

Jiangsu Provincial Office, SAT   

 

At present, international tax reform has entered post-BEPS period. The great changes on the rules of international taxation and the increasing demand on tax transparency bring tremendous challenges to business operation as well as tax administration. Jiangsu provincial office of SAT (hereinafter referred to as “Jiangsu Office”) initiates cooperative compliance between taxpayers and tax authorities, and puts forward the goal of building a demonstration pilot of transparent international taxation to realize a modern and internationalized tax administration. To meet the new changes of international tax rules and the demands of SAT, as well as proposing the standpoints and research results of tax authority, Jiangsu Office formulates the 2016-2018 Compliance Plan on International Tax Administration for your reference.

1.     Cross-border tax risk control should be brought into corporate governance and internal control

 

BEPS reports indicate that enterprises should bring tax management and tax compliance into corporate governance and risk management. Years of surveys made by international authoritative institutions shows that cross-border transactions, especially related transactions, are the primary tax risk multinational corporations confronted. Thanks to G20 tax reform, tax evasion and avoidance of MNCs have drawn more and more attention of society. We think that to reduce cross-border tax risks not only concerned with operating risks and costs, but also concerned with the social morality and image of enterprises, and we suggest:

     (1)Bring the control of cross-border tax risk into corporate governance and internal control. Board of directors should map up risk management strategy and make an overall departmental arrangement for risk prevention;

(2)Important issues such as intra-group related transaction pricingcross border restructuring and offshore structure designs should be discussed and decided by board of directors;

(3)Entrusted Intermediary institutions may provide professional services, but the legal responsibilities and consequences of tax-related behaviors should undoubtedly be undertaken by the enterprise itself.

2.     Fully consider the contribution of China’s advantageous factors to the profits of Group

BEPS action plan clearly points out that special regional advantage is one of comparable factors, MNCs should fully considered the contribution of special regional factors when allocate global profits. Therefore, we remind MNCs to pay more attention to China’s special factors as follows:

    (1) Perfect public infrastructure. China is an investment-driven economy. For decades, Chinese government has made a great input on infrastructure and public service facilities. The convenience of infrastructure in china’s east coastal regions could be on par with that in developed countries. Tax essentially is an expense for the use of infrastructure and public service, perfect public goods is helpful for business operation and profit-making. MNCs should lay attention and consideration on this factor in global profit allocation;

    (2) Large Chinese market. China has a huge population and a fast growing middle class that form a great market capacity and huge consumer groups. This factor is unique in the world and inimitable by other small and medium-sized developing countries. Those MNCs which occupy major market shares in China should fully consider and quantify the contribution of this factor;

    (3) High value-added labor service. China has a large growing number of technicians of high value-added labor service in R&D and software design, many Chinese subsidiaries of MNCs have undertaken R&D activities for the Group but paid comparatively low salaries to those Chinese technicians. MNCs should consider the cost saving of this factor. Tax authorities will fully consider the contributions of China’s advantageous factors to the profit of Group in Transfer Pricing investigation, APA and bilateral negotiation. Jiangsu Office will concern with the following phenomenon:

    (1) Sales, assets and high value-added labor services of Chinese subsidiaries account a high proportion in the Group but profit and tax account a low proportion in the Group;

    (2) The Group makes a high sales and profit from Chinese market but leaves a low proportion of profit and tax to Chinese subsidiaries.

3.     The functions performed and the risk assumed should be aligned with the profit allocated

BEPS report emphasizes that tax should be aligned with economic actions and value creation. In addition, economic substance should correspond to the legal form. Therefore, the functions performed and risks assumed reflect directly the economic actions and value creation of a company. Perspective from Jiangsu Province, over several decades, these are following questions which are concerned with function orientation existing in the subsidiaries of MNEs in China. First is arbitrary.  It is not consistent to the arm's length principle that Legal form over economic substance. Second is untruthfulness. Despite the significance of the Chinese market in group value creation continue to improve and local R&D and marketing functions continue to increase, lack of recognition in these issues is common among most MNEs. Therefore, it is also a prominent issue that the head office lays a one-sided emphasis on   R&D, marketing and legal form, ignores the economic substance and value creation of the Chinese subsidiaries. Third is hysteresis. Many groups are not sensitive to the changes in international tax rules and China's international tax legislation, thus they normally lack in-depth research in this field. Furthermore, the function positioning of some subsidiaries is unchanged for years, which is totally lagged behind. It may result in tax risks. For these reasons, we recommend MNE group that:

(1) It is necessary to take a hard look at the functions performed and risks assumed by member companies in the business activities in China and position accurately to match the substance;

(2)Examine subsidiaries in China dynamically for the changes of business activities. With the Group's development or restructuring, subsidiaries may have changed functions or risk-bearing, for example, increased R&D or marketing. Therefore, it is inappropriate to keep the old positioning as pure contract manufacturer and share a low cost-plus returns. The groups should adjust their positioning and allocation of profits of Chinese subsidiaries to the actual situation;

    (3)Appropriate compensation should be considered when adjusting functions or risks. For example, the subsidiary in China undertakes a lot of the early R & D or marketing activities. However, the group transfers these functions to other affiliates at the threshold of the subsequent return. Thus, the function adjustment shall be reviewed by arm’s length principle and proper compensation should be paid for the early functions performed by the subsidiaries.

4. Localized and entrusted R&D of intangibles should obtain reasonable returns

Intangible Assets Transfer Pricing Report published by BEPS identifies development, improvement, preservation, protection and utilization as the five sectors of intangible value creation. The excess profit brought from intangibles should be shared according to its contribution to value creation. In practice, such activities as localized transformation, upgrading and expanding or entrusted R&D carried out by Chinese subsidiaries on the basis of the group original technology shall constitute intangible value creation. As a result, we remind transnational taxpayers:

(1) Although the localized or entrusted R&D are guided directly by the head office, it still has such features as decision making, risk-assuming, use of assets, significant staff input, and play a unique role in value creation. Head office should obtain proper profit for its function of Decision, but the contribution of localized or entrusted R&D to intangibles cannot be ignored. Furthermore, excess profits cannot be artificially allocated to a company purely by legal form, especially to those located in tax havens;

(2)Entrusted R&D is not common intra-group service and cannot be remunerated with a low cost-plus rate. Full compensation should be obtained considering such factors as employment of technicians, utilization of R & D results and cost saving;

(3)Enterprise which only has the legal ownership of intangibles or only provide funds rather than bearing risks or performing corresponding functions can just obtained appropriate compensation according to the arm's-length principle but not excessive returns.

5. Emphasis on the substance of business restructuring

Transnational taxpayers restructure frequently across the world, many restructuring activities involve adjustment of business functions and assets allocation of the Chinese members. According to the China's Enterprise Income Tax Law, business restructuring should be based on reasonable business purpose and economic substance. Otherwise tax authorities will re-determine the nature and make some tax adjustment. To this end, reminds transnational taxpayers:

(1)Restructuring should be based on reasonable business purpose rather than solely or primarily obtain tax benefit through artificially setting intermediate structure or increasing trading links, etc;

(2)Business restructuring should be evidenced by internal decision-making procedures and relevant documents including the decision of board, internal memorandum, assessment reports, contracts, supplementary agreements, vouchers of receipt and payment, records of communication, etc;

(3) Business restructuring must have substantive transfer of functions, risks, or assets. The actual implementation of the contract should be consistent to the form. In addition, the profit attributable to the parties shall be aligned to the assets and functions of the new configuration.

6. Application of the appropriate transfer pricing method based on value contribution 

BEPS report indicates that transfer pricing result should be consistent with value creation. It emphasizes the determination of pricing should be aligned with the arm’s length principle based on the effective analysis of functions and risks in the transactions among associated enterprises. In practice, with globalization and development of MNEs, the level of corporate concentration is very high in some industries. Due to lack of comparable information, it is hard to use traditional transfer pricing methods. Therefore, BEPS Action Plans suggest use diversified methods based on arm's length principle. According to experiences in transfer pricing investigation, APA practices and consensus with some MNEs, we recommended that MNEs to adjust mindset and try a new transfer pricing methods based on the analysis of global value chain, which can be divided into three steps specifically:

    (1)Collect sufficient information including the Group's master file, country-by-country report, commercial databases, internal financial data, etc. The subsidiaries should strengthen intra-group communication and to promote full understanding of the substance of relevant information;

    (2)Analyze the operation and profit of the group value chain, make clear the functions and relevant undertakers on the value chain, and identify the core elements in value creation, such as intangibles, fixed assets, personnel and market;

 (3)Allocate the total profit on the value chain to different function bearers according to a set core indicators (such as assets, sales, expenses, costs, etc.) to ensure that the allocation match the functions performed and the risks assumed by these parties on the value chain. Analysis should be based on the arm's length principle and mutual understanding should be reached through full communication between taxpayers and tax authority to avoid simply applying the formula allocation method to allocate profits.

7. Avoid aggressive tax planning              

G20 tax reform reach the consensus that tax should be based on economic substance and double non-taxation should be averted. Member countries should review and revise their internal tax laws to stop up loopholes. Therefore, we suggest that multinational taxpayers should avoid aggressive tax planning principally purposed on tax avoidance as follows:

    (1)Set up a shell company in a low tax area, which only meet the legal form rather than occupying substantial economic activity, and attribute equity, debt, intangibles to this company. The company enjoys preference of tax treaty, and at the same time enjoys tax exemption of the low tax country;

(2)Set up a multi-layer overseas shareholding structure, and transformed a company to a foreign company in legal form, but  substantially actual management organization still keep in China, so as to avoid Chinese tax jurisdiction;

(3) Reduce artificially the amount of taxable items through splitting contracts, signing tripartite contract, concealing or reducing non-resident services, evading identification of permanent establishment, deliberately adjusting or confusing charged items in a general contract containing equipment import, technical service, and technology utilization. Tax authorities will make tax adjustment in accordance with the principle of substance over form to prevent tax base erosion and profit shift.

8. Avoid the mismatches with high tax risk

From the perspective of the tax authorities, we inform multinationals that tax authorities are especially paying attention to the possible mismatches existing in the following situations:

    (1)Mismatch between the profit trend of the group and its members in China. The group as a whole makes profit while Chinese members make very few profits or even are in red;

    (2)Mismatch between the group’s social image and its tax contribution. The group enjoys great popularity both at home and abroad, while Chinese members have paid little tax at where they are located;

    (3)Mismatch between valuation and profit allocation. The Chinese members are major manufacturing bases of the group and even have R&D function, and Chinese market accounts for the key market of the group. Yet, Chinese members have been attributed with a very small share of the group’s profit;

    (4)Mismatch between the status of hi-tech enterprise and its tax performance. The enterprise are paying great amount of royalty to foreign country and making few profit while enjoying preferential treatment as hi-tech enterprise;

    (5)Mismatch between the expansion of business scale and the inefficiency of business performance. Chinese members are running with stable or even expanding business scale, but the long-term small profit or loss continues;

    (6)Mismatch between the input and the output. Chinese members have paid royalty and other group expenses for years, but the application of intangibles and the service bought at high price failed to result in good business performance. To the contrary, many Chinese members maintained their long-term small profit or loss.

9. Improve the quality of transfer pricing documentation

According to Transfer Pricing Documentation and CountrybyCountry Reporting, the Final Report of BEPS Action 13, taxpayers are required to prepare master files, local files and country-by-country report, which require multinationals to disclose more information. In practice, there are prominent problems such as information from taxpayers’ transfer pricing documentation being not in conformity with that from their tax returns, function-defining being not in conformity with the actual situation, comparable chosen with strong subjectivity, lack of rationality when adjusting special factors, preparation of documentation in fixed form, which reduced significance of transfer pricing documentation. Some taxpayers even make low-level errors such as the inconsistency of the figures of cross-border related transactions from accounting book, tax returns and transfer pricing documentation. The management, business and financial personnel of many enterprises are short of basic understanding about arm’s length principle, comparable identification and pricing rules. Many enterprises do not have the decision-making power on market and pricing and have to follow the decisions of headquarters. When preparing the transfer pricing documentation, they can hardly communicate well with the headquarters, which leads to contradictions and conflicts between the documentation and master files prepared by the headquarters. Hence, the multinational taxpayers are expected to pay great attention to the quality of transfer pricing documentation:

    (1)Pay close attention to the upcoming new rules on transfer pricing documentation, prepared various information as required authentically, completely and accurately; prepare the local file, master file and country-by-country report in a systematic way to avoid mistakes and omissions, contradictions and deficiency;

    (2)The quality of transfer pricing documentation is critical for risk rating. Tax authorities will review the transfer pricing documentation, raise the risk level of the taxpayers with poor quality of documentation and give priority in transfer pricing investigation;

    (3)Tax intermediaries are supposed to put into play their professional skills, help enterprises to improve the quality of their documentation. As to those intermediaries and their employees engaging in the preparation of documents but with poor quality, the tax authorities will make them known within certain extent;

    (4)As required by principle of tax transparency, gist of BEPS Reports and tax laws of China, the headquarters of multinationals are expected to pay more attention on risk control of cross-border related transactions, to improve the quality of documentation, and to help Chinese members to disclose actual situation about its global structure and pricing principles and other information to avoid contradictions and conflicts between the global files, country-by-country report and the transfer pricing documentation.

10. Pay attention to the compliance of legal obligation on reporting and filing

Administration and taxation according to law not only require tax authorities to regulate law enforcement by the list of duties, but also raise higher requirement on taxpayers’ self reporting. Taxpayers are responsible for the legal compliance of reporting and filing. As a result, from the perspective of international taxation, the multinational taxpayers are expected to:

(1)Perform reporting and filing obligations in time, including reporting of related transactions and non-resident tax withholding,  and putting on record of non-resident contracts, outbound payment, treaty treatment, special tax treatment, indirect transfer of property and outbound investment, which shall all be finished within time limits;       

(2)Reported and filed information and data shall reflect authentically and completely the operation. Tax authorities will review these information and data through internal and external cross-match to find out mistakes and missing;

    (3)The compliance with reporting and filing requirements will influence risk rating of enterprises. Risk management of tax authorities was triggered by analysis and cross-match of the reported and filed information. Risk treatment will be initiated to those with major mistakes and improper application of policy.

11. Fully understand the impact of The Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters, CRS and FATCA

With the successive implementation of The Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters, CRS and FATCA, the international cooperation in tax administration will be expanded to automatic batch information exchange of financial accounts, which will greatly squeeze the space of cross-border tax evasion and avoidance caused by information opacity. Multinational enterprises’ information such as (individual and entity) account holder’s name, address, account balance and income including dividend, interest and capital income will be disclosed to tax authorities. Therefore, multinational taxpayers are expected to:      

    (1) fully understand the details of The Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters, CRS and FATCA, analyze the potential impacts, and  standardize the management of financial accounts related to dividend, interest and capital income;

    (2) study the tax laws of countries related to their cross-border operation and standardize the distribution group profit and tax resources among countries according to G20’s principle of conforming tax rights with economic substance;

    (3) report or adjust potential risks of hiding income or parking profits in offshore accounts as required by domestic tax regulations. Tax authorities will strengthen administration on cross-border tax evasion and avoidance through international cooperation and coordination of corporate income tax and individual income tax.

12. Be aware of the international tax compliance in the context of global value chain

Economic globalization has made countries contact more closely in economic and tax interests. In this light, supervision and administration on cross-border transactions has drawn more attention in tax administration all over the world. Therefore, multinational taxpayers, going-abroad enterprises in particular, are expected to be aware of the international tax compliance in the context of global value chain.    

    (1) Enterprises with outbound investment are obliged to pay tax in resident country for global income, shall fully understand the parent company’s legal responsibilities and compliance risks, and shall not artificially move parent company’s function to foreign subsidiaries without economic substance by arrangements in legal form to avoid domestic tax obligation;

    (2)Enterprises with outbound investment shall, from the perspective of connecting business with taxation, make a sufficient plan by taking into consideration laws and regulations concerning investment and taxation in both home country and host country and tax cost of different forms of investment in different phases of outbound investment;

    (3) Enterprises with outbound investment shall follow arm’s length principle in related transactions. When transferring abroad right of using intangibles such as know-how and trademark, the parent company is supposed to charge reasonably for that. The pricing for related transactions shall be in conformity with tax laws of both home country and host country to avoid the risk of anti-avoidance investigation;

    (4) When parent company transfers part or whole ownership of intangibles abroad, the intangibles should be assessed and the home country shall be remunerated in taxation according to international practices;

    (5)When enterprises with outbound investment encounter double taxation, tax disputes or unfair tax treatment in foreign countries, they can initiate MAP of tax treaty to safeguard rights and interests.

13. Strengthen communication between taxpayers and tax authorities to improve transparency

G20 tax reform advocates better transparency to solve tax issues caused by information asymmetry. Good communication between taxpayers and tax authorities and information transparency reflects taxpayer’s voluntary compliance and is the core of cooperative compliance. To this end, multinational taxpayers are expected to:

    (1) communicate actively with tax authorities. In case of group plan or global arrangement, Chinese member is expected to invite headquarter to communicate with tax authority, so as to help tax authority reach correct judgment and adopt reasonable tax treatment;

    (2) communicate or provide documents to tax authority. To those who refuse to communicate or provide documents, tax authority will collect and review information through tax information exchange or other channels, and take necessary measures such as administrative punishment and approved collection based on actual situation;

    (3) pay special attention that if taxpayer refuse to provide evidence which is obliged to provide by law in the process of tax examination, the court in China will not accept the evidence if provided later in litigation procedure.

14. Pay attention to Jiangsu’s administrative measures concerning cross-border tax resources.

Since 2016 international tax reform entered into post-BEPS era when the fruits of reform will be transformed and put into practice. The reform of deepening administrative system of state and local taxation in China is to be implemented. Jiangsu provincial Office of SAT will further change ideas and methods, update technology, facilitate innovation to improve the supervision and control over multinational taxpayers:

    (1) Carry out analysis based on big data. Integrate information of tax returns, business database and third party resources, use data warehouse technology to screen risks, supervise the profit fluctuation of multinational companies. Determine risk rating by evaluating enterprise’s internal control, sense of communication, transparency, quality of documentation, etc and carry out classified risk response;

    (2) Focusing on function performed, orientation of value chain, match of economic substance and tax contribution, strengthen anti-avoidance investigation on such avoidance behaviors as transfer pricing, thin capitalization, CFC, profit shifting by using intangibles and financial instruments;

(3)Establish high-level communication channels. Jiangsu Office will enhance direct communication with head office of MNEs to convey viewpoints and treatments concerning cross-border tax cases, involve head office to participate in information disclosure and dialogue with tax authority so as to solve problems of information asymmetry, time-consuming of decision-making process and poor quality of risk response;

    (4) Actively put the fruits of international tax reform into practice. Pay much attention to hot issues such as profit contribution of China’s advantageous factors, profit returns of localization of intangible, applying the method of value contribution allocation, abuse of treaty, artificially avoiding the status of permanent establishment, respond to taxpayers’ concerns and enrich China’s viewpoints to safeguard national tax interests.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

信息公开选项:主动公开

江苏省国家税务局国际税务管理处承办               办公室2016530印发

 

 

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