Tag: Comparable data

These may be internal comparables, i.e. transactions between the tested party and independent parties, or external comparables, i.e. transactions between two independent entities that are not a party to the controlled transaction.

Bulgaria vs Rubbertek Bulgaria EOOD, April 2022, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No 3453

Bulgaria vs Rubbertek Bulgaria EOOD, April 2022, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No 3453

By judgment of 22 May 2020, the Administrative Court upheld the complaint filed by “Rubbertek Bulgaria” and set aside an assessment for FY 2015-2016 issued by the tax authorities on the determination of the arm’s length income resulting from related party transactions. According to the Administrative court, the tax assessment was unfounded and unsubstantiated. An appeal was filed by the tax authorities with the Supreme Administrative Court in which the authorities stated that the decision of the Administrative Court was incorrect. The court erred in finding that the decision of the tax authorities referred to other comparable companies than those in Rubbertek Bulgaria’s documentation. Furthermore, the court uncritically accepted Rubbertek Bulgaria’s claim that the reason for the deviation of the declared income from the median for 2015 and 2016 was a relocation of assets from the German company to the Bulgarian company. Judgement of the Supreme Administrative Court The Supreme Administrative Court decided in favour of the tax authorities and ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.93

Arm’s length interest rates can also be based on the return of realistic alternative transactions with comparable economic characteristics. Depending on the facts and circumstances, realistic alternatives to intra-group loans could be, for instance, bond issuances, loans which are uncontrolled transactions, deposits, convertible debentures, commercial papers, etc. In the evaluation of those alternatives as potential comparables it is important to bear in mind that, based on facts and circumstances, comparability adjustments may be required to eliminate the material effects of differences between the controlled intra-group loan and the selected alternative in terms of, for instance, liquidity, maturity, existence of collateral or currency ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter IX paragraph 9.83

Once the existence or absence of an indemnification clause in favour of the restructured entity upon termination, non-renewal or substantial renegotiation of the agreements has been determined, the analysis should then focus on assessing whether such indemnification clause and its terms (or absence thereof) are arm’s length. Where comparables data evidence a similar indemnification clause (or absence thereof) in comparable circumstances, the indemnification clause (or absence thereof) in a controlled transaction will be regarded as arm’s length ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter V paragraph 5.28

Taxpayers should not be expected to incur disproportionately high costs and burdens in producing documentation. Therefore, tax administrations should balance requests for documentation against the expected cost and administrative burden to the taxpayer of creating it. Where a taxpayer reasonably demonstrates, having regard to the principles of these Guidelines, that either no comparable data exists or that the cost of locating the comparable data would be disproportionately high relative to the amounts at issue, the taxpayer should not be required to incur costs in searching for such data ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.167

One possible approach is to split the relevant profits based on the division of profits that actually is observed in comparable uncontrolled transactions. Examples of possible sources of information on uncontrolled transactions that might usefully assist the determination of criteria to split the profits, depending on the facts and circumstances of the case, include joint-venture arrangements between independent parties under which profits are shared, such as development projects in the oil and gas industry; pharmaceutical collaborations, co-marketing or co-promotion agreements; arrangements between independent music record labels and music artists; uncontrolled arrangements in the financial services sector, etc ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.150

Under a contribution analysis, the relevant profits, which are the total profits from the controlled transactions under examination, are divided between the associated enterprises in order to arrive at a reasonable approximation of the division that independent enterprises would have achieved from engaging in comparable transactions. This division can be supported by comparables data where available. In the absence thereof, it should be based on the relative value of the contributions by each of the associated enterprises participating in the controlled transactions, determined using information internal to the MNE group, as a proxy for the division that independent enterprises would have achieved (see Section C.5.2). In cases where the relative value of the contributions can be measured, it may not be necessary to estimate the actual market value of each party’s contributions ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter II paragraph 2.144

While the transactional profit split method can be applied in cases where there are no uncontrolled comparables, information from transactions between independent parties may still be relevant to the application of the method, for example to guide the splitting of relevant profits (see Section C.3.1.1), or where a residual analysis approach is used (see Section C.3.1.2) ... Read more
France vs BSA Finances, December 2021, Court of Appeal Versailles, Case No 20VE03249

France vs BSA Finances, December 2021, Court of Appeal Versailles, Case No 20VE03249

In 2009, 2010 and 2011 BSA Finances received a total of five loans granted by the Luxembourg company Nethuns, which belongs to the same group (the “Lactalis group”). Depending on the date on which the loans were granted, they carried interest rates of respectively 6.196%, 3.98% and 4.52%. Following an audit covering the FY 2009 to 2011, the tax authorities considered that BSA Finances did not justify that the interest rates thus charged should exceed the average effective rates charged by credit institutions for variable-rate loans to companies with an initial term of more than two years. Hence, the portion of interest exceeding these rates was considered non-deductible pursuant to the provisions of Article 212(I) of the General Tax Code. In 2017, the  Administrative Court ruled in favor of BSA Finances and discharged the additional corporate tax. But this decision was appealed by the authorities to the Administrative Court of Appeal which in  June 2019 overturned the decision of the ... Read more

OECD COVID-19 TPG paragraph 4

However, the unique and almost unprecedented economic conditions arising from and government responses to COVID-19 have led to practical challenges for the application of the arm’s length principle. For example, the pandemic may raise novel issues or exacerbate in complexity or magnitude the occurrence of certain transfer pricing issues (e.g. effect of government assistance or the availability of reliable comparable data). For taxpayers applying transfer pricing rules for the financial years impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and for tax administrations that will be evaluating this application, there is a need to address these practical questions. Based on the responses to the questionnaires submitted to members of the Inclusive Framework and businesses, and conscious of the need to provide practical and timely guidance, this note addresses four priority issues: (i) comparability analysis; (ii) allocation of losses and the allocation of COVID-19 specific costs; (iii) government assistance programmes; and (iv) Advance Pricing Arrangements (“APAs”). For ease of presentation, these issues have been ... Read more
France vs BSA Finances, December 2020, Supreme Administrative Court , Case No 433723

France vs BSA Finances, December 2020, Supreme Administrative Court , Case No 433723

In 2009, 2010 and 2011 BSA Finances received a total of five loans granted by the Luxembourg company Nethuns, which belongs to the same group (the “Lactalis group”). Depending on the date on which the loans were granted, they carried interest rates of respectively 6.196%, 3.98% and 4.52%. Following an audit covering the FY 2009 to 2011, the tax authorities considered that BSA Finances did not justify that the interest rates thus charged should exceed the average effective rates charged by credit institutions for variable-rate loans to companies with an initial term of more than two years. Hence, the portion of interest exceeding these rates was considered non-deductible pursuant to the provisions of Article 212(I) of the General Tax Code. In 2017, the  Administrative Court ruled in favor of BSA Finances and discharged the additional corporate tax. But this decision was appealed by the authorities to the Administrative Court of Appeal which in  June 2019 overturned the decision of the ... Read more
France vs Sté Paule Ka Holding, December 2020, Paris Administrative Court of Appeal, Case No 18PA02715

France vs Sté Paule Ka Holding, December 2020, Paris Administrative Court of Appeal, Case No 18PA02715

Sté Paule Ka Holding, was set up as part of a leveraged buy-out (LBO) operation to finance the acquisition of the Paule Ka group, and in 2011 it acquired the entire capital of the group a price of 42 million euros. The acquisition was financed by issuing convertible bonds carrying an interest rate of 8%. The French tax authorities issued an assessment where deductions for certain payments related to the acquisition and part of the interest payments on the bonds were disallowed. Decision from the Administrative court of appeal The Court found in favor of the company in regards to the payment related to the acquisition and in favor of the tax administration in regards to the partially disallowed deduction of interest payments. “It follows from the foregoing that the elements invoked by the administration do not provide proof that the expenditure of EUR 390,227 correctly entered in the accounts was not incurred in the interest of the company Paule Ka Holding. The ... Read more
France vs WB Ambassador, December 2020, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No 428522

France vs WB Ambassador, December 2020, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No 428522

WB Ambassador took out two loans with its Luxembourg parent company and another group company, each bearing an annual interest rate of 7%. Following an audit, the tax authorities considering that the company did not justify that the 7% interest rate of the above-mentioned intra-group loans corresponded to the rate it could have obtained from independent financial institutions or organisations under similar conditions and partially disallowed deductions of the interest incurred. Supreme Administrative Court The Supreme Administrative Court overturned the decision of the Administrative court of Appeal and ruled in favor of the WB Ambassador. It stated that the Lower Court had erred in law in ruling out the possibility that a company, in order to justify the rate it could have obtained from independent financial institutions for a loan granted under similar conditions, could rely, in order to assess that rate, on the yield of bond issues granted by undertakings in comparable economic conditions. Consequently, WB Ambassador was entitled, ... Read more
France vs Studialis, October 2020, Administrative Court of Appeal, Case No 18PA01026

France vs Studialis, October 2020, Administrative Court of Appeal, Case No 18PA01026

Between the end of 2008 and the end of 2012 Studialis had issued bonds subscribed by British funds, partners of a Luxembourg company, itself a majority partner of Studialis, carrying an interest rate of 10%. The Tax authorities considered that the interest rate on the bonds was higher than the limit provided for by Article 212, I of the CGI (at the time between 2.8% and 4.1%). According to the authorities only an effective loan offer contemporaneous with the transactions and taking into account the specific characteristics of the borrowing company could establish with certainty the rate it would have received from a independent credit institution, and rejected all the evidence in support of the pricing presented by the company. Decision of the Administrative Court of Appeal The Court ruled in favor of Studialis. It considered that the evidence provided by Studialis – loan offers and certificates from independent banks combined with and a comparability study on rates of bonds ... Read more
Hungary vs "Lender" Kft, February 2020, Budapest Administrative Court, Case No. 16.K.33.691/2019/18

Hungary vs “Lender” Kft, February 2020, Budapest Administrative Court, Case No. 16.K.33.691/2019/18

In 2008 Lender Kft. entered into a loan agreement with its foreign domiciled affiliated company Kft. 1. According to the terms of the contract, the loan amounted to 53,174,516, the maturity date of the loan was 31 January 2013 and the interest was paid semi-annually at the semi-annual CDI rate fixed in the contract plus 200 basis points per annum. In the years 2009-2011, Kft. 1 paid 15 % of the interest as withholding tax, and Lender Kft. received 85 % of the interest. In its books, Lender Kft. entered 100 % of the interest as income, while the 15 % withholding tax was recorded as other expenses. According to Lender Kft’s transfer pricing records, the normal market interest rate range was 8,703 % to 10,821 % in FY 2009, 10,704 % to 12,598 % in the FY 2010 and 10,704 % to 12,598 % in FY 2001, and the interest rates applied in the loan transaction were 10,701 % ... Read more
France vs SAS Wheelabrator Group, July 2019, Conseil d’Etat Opinion, No 429426

France vs SAS Wheelabrator Group, July 2019, Conseil d’Etat Opinion, No 429426

In an Opinion issued on 10 July 2019 on request from the Administrative Court of Versailles, the Conseil d’Etat states as a principle that the arm’s length nature of intra-group interest rate can be demonstrated by reference to comparable unrelated transactions, when these loans constitutes realistic alternatives to the intra-group loan. Excerpt from the Opinion “… 5. The rate that the borrowing enterprise could have obtained from independent financial establishments or organizations under similar conditions means, for the purposes of these provisions, the rate that such establishments or organizations would have been susceptible, account given its own characteristics, in particular its risk profile, to grant it for a loan with the same characteristics under arm’s length conditions. 6. This rate cannot, having regard to the difference in nature between a loan from a financial institution or body and financing by bond issue, be that which this enterprise would itself have been able to serve for subscribers if it had chosen to ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.167

One possible approach is to split the relevant profits based on the division of profits that actually is observed in comparable uncontrolled transactions. Examples of possible sources of information on uncontrolled transactions that might usefully assist the determination of criteria to split the profits, depending on the facts and circumstances of the case, include joint-venture arrangements between independent parties under which profits are shared, such as development projects in the oil and gas industry; pharmaceutical collaborations, co-marketing or co-promotion agreements; arrangements between independent music record labels and music artists; uncontrolled arrangements in the financial services sector, etc ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.150

Under a contribution analysis, the relevant profits, which are the total profits from the controlled transactions under examination, are divided between the associated enterprises in order to arrive at a reasonable approximation of the division that independent enterprises would have achieved from engaging in comparable transactions. This division can be supported by comparables data where available. In the absence thereof, it should be based on the relative value of the contributions by each of the associated enterprises participating in the controlled transactions, determined using information internal to the MNE group, as a proxy for the division that independent enterprises would have achieved (see section C.5.2). In cases where the relative value of the contributions can be measured, it may not be necessary to estimate the actual market value of each party’s contributions ... Read more

TPG2018 Chapter II paragraph 2.144

While the transactional profit split method can be applied in cases where there are no uncontrolled comparables, information from transactions between independent parties may still be relevant to the application of the method, for example to guide the splitting of relevant profits (see section C.3.1.1), or where a residual analysis approach is used (see section C.3.1.2) ... Read more

TPG2017 Chapter IX paragraph 9.83

Once the existence or absence of an indemnification clause in favour of the restructured entity upon termination, non-renewal or substantial renegotiation of the agreements has been determined, the analysis should then focus on assessing whether such indemnification clause and its terms (or absence thereof) are arm’s length. Where comparables data evidence a similar indemnification clause (or absence thereof) in comparable circumstances, the indemnification clause (or absence thereof) in a controlled transaction will be regarded as arm’s length ... Read more