Bulletin 44

Printable Version

IRELAND: Property tax increases now deferred until 2020-2021

The Irish government has again postponed its plans to revalue domestic property for the purposes of local property tax (LPT), this time from 1 November 2019 to 1 November 2020. Property prices have increased sharply but unevenly across the Republic of Ireland since the last valuation in May 2013, giving rise to fears of significant rises in LPT bills in some places. A further consultation will aim at ensuring ‘relative stability’ and that the resulting increases will be ‘modest, affordable and fair’.

NETHERLANDS: Beneficial ownership register in sight

Legislation to establish a partially public register of ultimate beneficial owners of companies was submitted to the Dutch parliament on 4 April. The register will be introduced as part of the Trade Register of the Chamber of Commerce in January 2020, after which all newly registered companies will have to comply.

UK: Registration requirements for non-resident property investors

HMRC has published guidance clarifying the registration requirements to be imposed on non-UK resident corporate investors making a direct or indirect disposal of UK commercial property. As of this week, most such investors must pay UK corporation tax on capital gains from direct or indirect sales of UK commercial real estate, and need to register for UK corporation tax within three months of the sale. Even if no sale occurs, they will have to register by 6 April 2020, when they become liable to tax on income from UK property, as well as capital gains tax.

OECD: Model Tax Convention Published

The OECD has now published the full version of its 2017 Model Tax Convention on Income and Capital. The model convention is aimed at providing a standard for concluding bilateral tax conventions between countries in order to facilitate economic development, to prevent tax evasion, and to settle circumstances where international double taxation arise. The model stresses the importance for taxpayers of standardising taxation in cross-border trade. The 2017 model incorporates revisions to treaty-related measures following on from outcomes of the OECD BEPS Project, in particular concerning hybrid mismatches, treaty benefits, permanent establishment and dispute resolution.

UK: Tax now payable on offshore income from intangible property used to generate UK sales

Income earned by offshore companies from intangible property used to generate UK sales is subject to UK income tax from 6 April 2019. Companies must self-assess their own liability, and any company in the same group can be held jointly and severally liable for the tax, which is charged on gross revenues rather than profit.

EU: Commission Proposes VAT Exemption for Defence Supplies

The European Commission has adopted a proposal that an exemption from VAT and excise duties should be included in the VAT Directive concerning supplies made to armed forces, when the forces are deployed in a European defence effort outside their member state. This proposal is made in line with the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy, and aims to amend the VAT Directive to include an exemption that would mirror the one currently in place for supplies made to forces engaged in NATO defence efforts. The revision would ensure equal treatment of supplies concerning defence efforts under the NATO and EU frameworks.

MONEY LAUNDERING: US names almost all Caribbean and Latin American nations as ‘major drug money centres’

The US Department of State has named many Caribbean and Central American jurisdictions as ‘major money laundering countries whose financial institutions engage in currency transactions involving significant amounts of proceeds from international narcotics trafficking’. The only countries in the region to be left off the 2018 version of the US International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR)’s list are Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, and the French overseas departments of French Guiana, Guadeloupe and Martinique.

BAHAMAS: Further guidance on economic substance act

The Bahamas’ financial regulator has published a frequently answered questions document on the jurisdiction’s recently enacted economic substance legislation, the Commercial Entities (Substance Requirements) Act 2018 (CESRA).

Source: STEP

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