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Aseem Chawla Senior Partner, MPC Legal New Delhi December 2, 2013 Indo-American Chambers of Commerce Resurgence Summit : Search for Innovative Strategies Recent developments
Contents 2 Mutual Agreement Procedure: Alternative Forum of Tax Redressal – Under Challenge Transfer Pricing: Litigation and Curative Initiatives Other Considerations For Discussion Purposes © MPC Legal
Article 27 of the Indo-US tax treaty provides a mechanism of resolution of tax disputes through interaction of competent authorities of both nations; India and USA have had a troubled competent authority relationship in the past with regard to Mutual Agreement Procedure (‘MAP’); Several hundreds of crores are locked in tax demand in as many as 175 tax disputes involving US multinationals; Backlog of cases and stagnant approach has caused the perception of a hostile tax and investment environment and lack of certainty; However, the recent dialogue between Indian tax officials and their US counterparts have paved way for expeditious disposal of long-pending tax disputes. 3 Mutual Agreement Procedure For Discussion Purposes © MPC Legal
India somehow has become a breeding ground for Transfer Pricing litigation; Introduction of Advance Pricing Agreement (‘APA’) has come as a fresh breath of air for MNCs with more than 140 applications for APAs already been filed. Significantly, US has now agreed to recognize the Indian APA, which will encourage more US companies to file APA applications; Safe harbour rules have also been introduced in the Income tax law to specify the circumstances, in which the income-tax authorities shall accept the transfer price declared by the assessee. The safe harbour with regard to operating margin prescribed for software development and ITES industry shall give the much needed impetus to the industry. 4 Transfer Pricing For Discussion Purposes © MPC Legal
Tax Residency Certificate & Other Documentation Furnishing of a valid Tax Residency Certificate (‘TRC’) and or other documentation have been made a mandatory condition to claim protection under tax treaties; Apart from TRC, other tax payers ought to maintain other information such as TIN, address, period of residential status; Hike in withholding tax rates Domestic tax rates for royalty and fee for technical services have been raised to 25% from the existing 10% (lower than the Indo-US tax treaty rate of 15%); Impact of hike in the withholding tax rates is a matter of deliberation as regards Indo-US trade relations, given the fact that US is a significant provider of technology to India. 5 Other Considerations For Discussion Purposes © MPC Legal
6 NOTE: This presentation is for discussion and general guidance purposes. It may not be used for any other purpose, or distributed to any other party, without seeking our prior written consent. No party should rely on this presentation without taking necessary prior professional advice For Discussion Purposes © MPC Legal
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