Tag: Delineation

Delineation is the framework for analysing transactions between associated enterprises and requires taking the following steps:

(i) Identify the objekt transferred in the transaction with specificity and the specific, economically significant risks associated with the transfer

(ii) Identify the full contractual arrangements and other indicia of legal ownership, contractual rights and obligations including contractual assumption of risks in the relations between the associated enterprises;

(iii) Identify the parties performing functions, using assets, and managing risks by means of the functional analysis, and in particular determine which parties control any outsourced functions, and control specific, economically significant risks;

(iv) Confirm the consistency between the terms of contractual arrangements and the conduct of the parties, and determine whether the party assuming economically significant risks under Step 4 (i) of paragraph 1.60, also controls the risks and has the financial capacity to assume the risks;

(v) Delineate the actual controlled transactions in light of the relevant contractual relations and the conduct of the parties, including their relevant contributions of functions, assets and risks, taking into account the framework for analysing and allocating risk under Section D.1.2.1 of Chapter I;

After having accurately delineated the transaction, where possible, determine arm’s length prices for the transactions consistent with each party’s contributions of functions performed, assets used, and risks assumed, unless the guidance in Section D.2 of Chapter I (non-recognition) applies.

TPG 1.33-1.73 and 6.34

§ 1.482-1T(i)(E)Example 7.

Distinguishing provision of value from characterization – (i) P developed a collection of resources, capabilities, and rights (“Collection”) that it uses on an interrelated basis in ongoing research and development of computer code that is used to create a successful line of software products. P can continue to use the Collection on such interrelated basis in the future to further develop computer code and, thus, further build on its successful line of software products. Under § 1.482-7(g)(2)(ix), P determines that the interquartile range of the net present value of its own use of the Collection in future research and development and software product marketing is between $1000x and $1100x, and this range provides the most reliable measure of the value to P of continuing to use the Collection on an interrelated basis in future research, development, and exploitation. Instead, P enters into an exchange described in section 351 in which it transfers certain intangible property related to the Collection to S1 for ... Read more

§ 1.482-1(f)(2)(ii)(A) In general.

The Commissioner will evaluate the results of a transaction as actually structured by the taxpayer unless its structure lacks economic substance. However, the Commissioner may consider the alternatives available to the taxpayer in determining whether the terms of the controlled transaction would be acceptable to an uncontrolled taxpayer faced with the same alternatives and operating under comparable circumstances. In such cases the Commissioner may adjust the consideration charged in the controlled transaction based on the cost or profit of an alternative as adjusted to account for material differences between the alternative and the controlled transaction, but will not restructure the transaction as if the alternative had been adopted by the taxpayer. See paragraph (d)(3) of this section (factors for determining comparability; contractual terms and risk); §§ 1.482-3(e), 1.482-4(d), and 1.482-9(h) (unspecified methods) ... Read more

§ 1.482-1(d)(3)(ii)(C) Example 6.

Contractual terms imputed from economic substance. (i) Company X is a member of a controlled group that has been in operation in the pharmaceutical sector for many years. In years 1 through 4, Company X undertakes research and development activities. As a result of those activities, Company X developed a compound that may be more effective than existing medications in the treatment of certain conditions. (ii) Company Y is acquired in year 4 by the controlled group that includes Company X. Once Company Y is acquired, Company X makes available to Company Y a large amount of technical data concerning the new compound, which Company Y uses to register patent rights with respect to the compound in several jurisdictions, making Company Y the legal owner of such patents. Company Y then enters into licensing agreements with group members that afford Company Y 100% of the premium return attributable to use of the intangible property by its subsidiaries. (iii) In determining ... Read more

§ 1.482-1(d)(3)(ii)(C) Example 4.

Contractual terms imputed from economic substance. (i) FP, a foreign producer of athletic gear, is the registered holder of the AA trademark in the United States and in other countries worldwide. In year 1, FP enters into a licensing agreement that affords its newly organized United States subsidiary, USSub, exclusive rights to certain manufacturing and marketing intangible property (including the AA trademark) for purposes of manufacturing and marketing athletic gear in the United States under the AA trademark. The contractual terms of this agreement obligate USSub to pay FP a royalty based on sales, and also obligate both FP and USSub to undertake without separate compensation specified types and levels of marketing activities. Unrelated foreign businesses license independent United States businesses to manufacture and market athletic gear in the United States, using trademarks owned by the unrelated foreign businesses. The contractual terms of these uncontrolled transactions require the licensees to pay royalties based on sales of the merchandise, and obligate ... Read more

§ 1.482-1(d)(3)(ii)(C) Example 3.

Contractual terms imputed from economic substance. (i) FP, a foreign producer of wristwatches, is the registered holder of the YY trademark in the United States and in other countries worldwide. In year 1, FP enters the United States market by selling YY wristwatches to its newly organized United States subsidiary, USSub, for distribution in the United States market. USSub pays FP a fixed price per wristwatch. USSub and FP undertake, without separate compensation, marketing activities to establish the YY trademark in the United States market. Unrelated foreign producers of trademarked wristwatches and their authorized United States distributors respectively undertake similar marketing activities in independent arrangements involving distribution of trademarked wristwatches in the United States market. In years 1 through 6, USSub markets and sells YY wristwatches in the United States. Further, in years 1 through 6, USSub undertakes incremental marketing activities in addition to the activities similar to those observed in the independent distribution transactions in the United States market ... Read more
TPG2022 Chapter VI Annex I example 7

TPG2022 Chapter VI Annex I example 7

16. Primero is the parent company of an MNE group engaged in the pharmaceutical business and does business in country M. Primero develops patents and other intangibles relating to Product X and registers those patents in countries around the world. 17. Primero retains its wholly owned country N subsidiary, Company S, to distribute Product X throughout Europe and the Middle East on a limited risk basis. The distribution agreement provides that Primero, and not Company S, is to bear product recall and product liability risk, and provides further that Primero will be entitled to all profit or loss from selling Product X in the territory after providing Company S with the agreed level of compensation for its distribution functions. Operating under the contract, Company S purchases Product X from Primero and resells Product X to independent customers in countries throughout its geographical area of operation. In performing its distribution functions, Company S follows all applicable regulatory requirements. 18. In the ... Read more
TPG2022 Chapter VI Annex I example 2

TPG2022 Chapter VI Annex I example 2

5. The facts related to the development and control of patentable inventions are the same as in Example 1. However, instead of granting a perpetual and exclusive licence of its patents back to Premiere, Company S, acting under the direction and control of Premiere, grants licences of its patents to associated and independent enterprises throughout the world in exchange for periodic royalties. For purposes of this example, it is assumed that the royalties paid to Company S by associated enterprises are all arm’s length. 6. Company S is the legal owner of the patents. However, its contributions to the development, enhancement, maintenance, protection, and exploitation of the patents are limited to the activities of its three employees in registering the patents and maintaining the patent registrations. The Company S employees do not control or participate in the licensing transactions involving the patents. Under these circumstances, Company S is only entitled to compensation for the functions it performs. Based on an ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.215

In accurately delineating fronting arrangements, the same principles stated for captive insurance apply. It is important to note, however, that fronting arrangements represent particularly complex controlled transactions to price as they involve the participation of a third party that is indifferent to the levels of the price of the insurance and reinsurance transactions. The key issues which are likely to arise in fronting cases are whether the transactions involved amount to genuine insurance or reinsurance and, if there is genuine insurance, whether the premiums payable (ultimately to the reinsurance captive) are on arm’s length terms ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.209

In the process of accurately delineating the actual transaction involving a captive insurance, the economically relevant risks associated with issuing insurance policies, i.e. underwriting, must be identified with specificity. Part IV of the Report on the Attribution of Profits to Permanent Establishments provides a description of those risks that include, inter alia, insurance risk, commercial risk or investment risk. These descriptions remain valid for the purpose of this guidance ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.127

Credit risk refers to the risk of loss resulting from the inability of cash pool members with debit positions to repay their cash withdrawals. From the cash pool leader’s perspective, there needs to be a probability for it to incur losses derived from the default of cash pool members with debit positions to bear the credit risk. Therefore, an examination under Chapter I guidance will be required to determine, under the specific facts and circumstances, which entity within the MNE group is exercising control functions and has the financial capacity to assume the credit risk associated with the cash pool arrangement ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.126

Liquidity risk in a cash pool arrangement arises from the mismatch between the maturity of the credit and debit balances of the cash pool members. Assuming the liquidity risk associated to a cash pool requires the exercise of control functions beyond the mere offsetting of the credit and debit positions of the cash pool members. Therefore, an analysis of the decision-making process related to the amounts of the debit and credit positions within the cash pool arrangement will be required to allocate the liquidity risk under Chapter I ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.125

Before any attempt is made to determine the remuneration of the cash pool leader and participants, it is central to the transfer pricing analysis to identify and examine under Chapter I guidance the economically significant risks associated to the cash pooling arrangement. These could include liquidity risk and credit risk. These risks should be analysed taking into account the short-term nature of the credit and debit positions within the cash pooling arrangement (see paragraph 10.123) ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.124

A potential difficulty for tax administrations in analysing cash pooling arrangements is that the various entities in a cash pool may be resident across a number of jurisdictions, potentially making it difficult to access sufficient information to verify the position as set out by the taxpayer. It would be of assistance to tax authorities if MNE groups would provide information on the structuring of the pool and the returns to the cash pool leader and the members in the cash pool as part of their transfer pricing documentation. (See Annex I to Chapter V of these Guidelines about the information to be included in the master file) ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.123

One of the practical difficulties in such situations will be deciding how long a balance should be treated as part of the cash pool before it could potentially be treated as something else, for example a term loan. As cash pooling is intended to be a short-term, liquidity-driven arrangement, it may be appropriate to consider whether the same pattern is present year after year and to examine what policies the MNE group’s financial management has in place, given that yield on cash balances is a key financial management issue ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.122

Another key consideration in analysing intra-group funding arrangements which might be described as cash pooling are situations where members of an MNE group maintain debit and credit positions which, rather than functioning as part of a short-term liquidity arrangement, become more long term. It would usually be appropriate to consider whether, on accurate delineation, it would be correct to treat them as something other than a short-term cash pool balance, such as a longer term deposit or a term loan ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.121

An advantage of a cash pooling arrangement may be the reduction of interest paid or the increase of interest received, which results from netting credit and debit balances. The amount of that group synergy benefit, calculated by reference to the results that the cash pool members would have obtained had they dealt solely with independent enterprises, would generally be shared by the cash pool members, provided that an appropriate reward is allocated to the cash pool leader for the functions it provides in accordance with Section C.2.3. of this chapter ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.120

As indicated in paragraph 1.179, the determination of the results that arise from deliberate concerted group actions must be established through a thorough functional analysis. Accordingly, in the context of cash pooling arrangements, it is necessary to determine (i) the nature of the advantage or disadvantage, (ii) the amount of the benefit or detriment provided, and (iii) how that benefit or detriment should be divided among members of the MNE group ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter X paragraph 10.119

In delineating the cash pool transactions, it may be that the savings and efficiencies achieved are determined to arise as a result of group synergies created through deliberate concerted action (as discussed in Section D.8 of Chapter I) ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter IX paragraph 9.10

A business restructuring may involve cross-border transfers of something of value, e.g. of valuable intangibles, although this is not always the case. It may also or alternatively involve the termination or substantial renegotiation of existing arrangements, e.g. manufacturing arrangements, distribution arrangements, licences, service agreements, etc. The first step in analysing the transfer pricing aspects of a business restructuring is to accurately delineate the transactions that comprise the business restructuring by identifying the commercial or financial relations and the conditions attached to those relations that lead to a transfer of value among the members of the MNE group. This is discussed in Section B. Section C discusses the recognition of accurately delineated transactions that comprise the business restructuring. The relationship between a business restructuring and the reallocation of profit potential is addressed in Section D. The transfer pricing consequences of the transfer of something of value are discussed in Section E of this part and the transfer pricing consequences of the ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.91

The provisions of Section D.1.1 of Chapter I apply in identifying the specific nature of a transaction involving a transfer of intangibles or rights in intangibles, in identifying the nature of any intangibles transferred, and in identifying any limitations imposed by the terms of the transfer on the use of those intangibles. For example, a written specification that a licence is non-exclusive or of limited duration need not be respected by the tax administration if such specification is not consistent with the conduct of the parties. Example 18 in the Annex I to Chapter VI illustrates the provisions of this paragraph ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.73

Undertaking the analysis described in Section D. 1 of Chapter I, as supplemented by this Chapter, should facilitate a clear assessment of legal ownership, functions, assets and risks associated with intangibles, and an accurate identification of the transactions whose prices and other conditions require determination. In general, the transactions identified by the MNE group in the relevant registrations and contracts are those whose prices and other conditions are to be determined under the arm’s length principle. However, the analysis may reveal that transactions in addition to, or different from, the transactions described in the registrations and contracts actually occurred. Consistent with Section D. 1 of Chapter I, the transactions (and the true terms thereof) to be analysed are those determined to have occurred consistent with the actual conduct of the parties and other relevant facts ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.45

The terms of the compensation that must be paid to members of the MNE group that contribute to the development, enhancement, maintenance, protection and exploitation of intangibles is generally determined on an ex ante basis. That is, it is determined at the time transactions are entered into and before risks associated with the intangible play out. The form of such compensation may be fixed or contingent. The actual (ex post) profit or loss of the business after compensating other members of the MNE group may differ from these anticipated profits depending on how the risks associated with the intangible or the other relevant risks related to the transaction or arrangement actually play out. The accurately delineated transaction, as determined under Section D. 1 of Chapter I, will determine which associated entity assumes such risks and accordingly will bear the consequences (costs or additional returns) when the risks materialise in a different manner to what was anticipated (see Section B.2.4) ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.34

The framework for analysing transactions involving intangibles between associated enterprises requires taking the following steps, consistent with the guidance for identifying the commercial or financial relations provided in Section D. 1 of Chapter I: i) Identify the intangibles used or transferred in the transaction with specificity and the specific, economically significant risks associated with the development, enhancement, maintenance, protection, and exploitation of the intangibles; ii) Identify the full contractual arrangements, with special emphasis on determining legal ownership of intangibles based on the terms and conditions of legal arrangements, including relevant registrations, licence agreements, other relevant contracts, and other indicia of legal ownership, and the contractual rights and obligations, including contractual assumption of risks in the relations between the associated enterprises; iii) Identify the parties performing functions (including specifically the important functions described in paragraph 6.56), using assets, and managing risks related to developing, enhancing, maintaining, protecting, and exploiting the intangibles by means of the functional analysis, and in particular which ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter VI paragraph 6.3

The principles of Chapters I – III of these Guidelines apply equally to transactions involving intangibles and those transactions which do not. Under those principles, as is the case with other transfer pricing matters, the analysis of cases involving the use or transfer of intangibles should begin with a thorough identification of the commercial or financial relations between the associated enterprises and the conditions and economically relevant circumstances attaching to those relations in order that the actual transaction involving the use or transfer of intangibles is accurately delineated. The functional analysis should identify the functions performed, assets used, and risks assumed1 by each relevant member of the MNE group. In cases involving the use or transfer of intangibles, it is especially important to ground the functional analysis on an understanding of the MNE’s global business and the manner in which intangibles are used by the MNE to add or create value across the entire supply chain. Where necessary, the analysis ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.148

Company S1 conducts research activities to develop intangibles that it uses to create new products that it can produce and sell. It agrees to transfer to an associated company, Company S2, unlimited rights to all future intangibles which may arise from its future work over a period of twenty years for a lump sum payment. The arrangement is commercially irrational for both parties since neither Company S1 nor Company S2 has any reliable means to determine whether the payment reflects an appropriate valuation, both because it is uncertain what range of development activities Company S1 might conduct over the period and also because valuing the potential outcomes would be entirely speculative. Under the guidance in this section, the structure of the arrangement adopted by the taxpayer, including the form of payment, should be modified for the purposes of the transfer pricing analysis. The replacement structure should be guided by the economically relevant characteristics, including the functions performed, assets used, and ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.147

Under the guidance in this section, the transaction should not be recognised. S1 is treated as not purchasing insurance and its profits are not reduced by the payment to S2; S2 is treated as not issuing insurance and therefore not being liable for any claim ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.146

Company S1 carries on a manufacturing business that involves holding substantial inventory and a significant investment in plant and machinery. It owns commercial property situated in an area prone to increasingly frequent flooding in recent years. Third-party insurers experience significant uncertainty over the exposure to large claims, with the result that there is no active market for the insurance of properties in the area. Company S2, an associated enterprise, provides insurance to Company S1, and an annual premium representing 80% of the value of the inventory, property and contents is paid by Company S1. In this example S1 has entered into a commercially irrational transaction since there is no market for insurance given the likelihood of significant claims, and either relocation or not insuring may be more attractive realistic alternatives. Since the transaction is commercially irrational, there is not a price that is acceptable to both S1 and S2 from their individual perspectives ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.144

The structure that for transfer pricing purposes, replaces that actually adopted by the taxpayers should comport as closely as possible with the facts of the actual transaction undertaken whilst achieving a commercially rational expected result that would have enabled the parties to come to a price acceptable to both of them at the time the arrangement was entered into ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.143

The key question in the analysis is whether the actual transaction possesses the commercial rationality of arrangements that would be agreed between unrelated parties under comparable economic circumstances, not whether the same transaction can be observed between independent parties. The non-recognition of a transaction that possesses the commercial rationality of an arm’s length arrangement is not an appropriate application of the arm’s length principle. Restructuring of legitimate business transactions would be a wholly arbitrary exercise the inequity of which could be compounded by double taxation created where the other tax administration does not share the same views as to how the transaction should be structured. It should again be noted that the mere fact that the transaction may not be seen between independent parties does not mean that it does not have characteristics of an arm’s length arrangement ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.142

This section sets out circumstances in which the transaction between the parties as accurately delineated can be disregarded for transfer pricing purposes. Because non-recognition can be contentious and a source of double taxation, every effort should be made to determine the actual nature of the transaction and apply arm’s length pricing to the accurately delineated transaction, and to ensure that non-recognition is not used simply because determining an arm’s length price is difficult. Where the same transaction can be seen between independent parties in comparable circumstances (i.e. where all economically relevant characteristics are the same as those under which the tested transaction occurs other than that the parties are associated enterprises) non-recognition would not apply. Importantly, the mere fact that the transaction may not be seen between independent parties does not mean that it should not be recognised. Associated enterprises may have the ability to enter into a much greater variety of arrangements than can independent enterprises, and may conclude ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.141

Every effort should be made to determine pricing for the actual transaction as accurately delineated under the arm’s length principle. The various tools and methods available to tax administrations and taxpayers to do so are set out in the following chapters of these Guidelines. A tax administration should not disregard the actual transaction or substitute other transactions for it unless the exceptional circumstances described in the following paragraphs 1.142-1.145 apply ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.140

In performing the analysis, the actual transaction between the parties will have been deduced from written contracts and the conduct of the parties. Formal conditions recognised in contracts will have been clarified and supplemented by analysis of the conduct of the parties and the other economically relevant characteristics of the transaction (see Section D.1.1). Where the characteristics of the transaction that are economically significant are inconsistent with the written contract, then the actual transaction will have been delineated in accordance with the characteristics of the transaction reflected in the conduct of the parties. Contractual risk assumption and actual conduct with respect to risk assumption will have been examined taking into account control over the risk (as defined in paragraphs 1.65-1.68) and the financial capacity to assume risk (as defined in paragraph 1.64), and consequently, risks assumed under the contract may have been allocated in accordance with the conduct of the parties and the other facts on the basis of steps ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.139

Following the guidance in the previous section, the transfer pricing analysis will have identified the substance of the commercial or financial relations between the parties, and will have accurately delineated the actual transaction by analysing the economically relevant characteristics ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.84 (Example 2)

Company B manufactures products for Company A. Under step 1 capacity utilisation risk and supply chain risk have been identified as economically significant in this transaction, and under step 2 it has been established that under the contract Company A assumes these risks. The functional analysis under step 3 provides evidence that Company B built and equipped its plant to Company A’s specifications, that products are manufactured to technical requirements and designs provided by Company A, that volume levels are determined by Company A, and that Company A runs the supply chain, including the procurement of components and raw materials. Company A also performs regular quality checks of the manufacturing process. Company B builds the plant, employs and trains competent manufacturing personnel, and determines production scheduling based on volume levels determined by Company A. Although Company B has incurred fixed costs, it has no ability to manage the risk associated with the recovery of those costs through determining the production ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.83 (Example 1)

Company A seeks to pursue a development opportunity and hires a specialist company, Company B, to perform part of the research on its behalf. Under step 1 development risk has been identified as economically significant in this transaction, and under step 2 it has been established that under the contract Company A assumes development risk. The functional analysis under step 3 shows that Company A controls its development risk through exercising its capability and authority in making a number of relevant decisions about whether and how to take on the development risk. These include the decision to perform part of the development work itself, the decision to seek specialist input, the decision to hire the particular researcher, the decision of the type of research that should be carried out and objectives assigned to it, and the decision of the budget allocated to Company B. Company A has mitigated its risk by taking measures to outsource development activities to Company B ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.82

In this step the functions in relation to risk of the associated enterprises that are parties to the transaction are analysed. The analysis provides information about how the associated enterprises operate in relation to the assumption and management of the specific, economically significant risks, and in particular about which enterprise or enterprises perform control functions and risk mitigation functions, which enterprise or enterprises encounter upside or downside consequences of risk outcomes, and which enterprise or enterprises have the financial capacity to assume the risk. This step is illustrated by the following examples and conclusions are drawn from these examples in subsequent paragraphs of Section D.1.2 ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.81

The assumption of risk has a significant effect on determining arm’s length pricing between associated enterprises, and it should not be concluded that the pricing arrangements adopted in the contractual arrangements alone determine which party assumes risk. Therefore, one may not infer from the fact that the price paid between associated enterprises for goods or services is set at a particular level, or by reference to a particular margin, that risks are borne by those associated enterprises in a particular manner. For example, a manufacturer may claim to be protected from the risk of price fluctuation of raw material as a consequence of its being remunerated by another group company on a basis that takes account of its actual costs. The implication of the claim is that the other group company bears the risk. The form of remuneration cannot dictate inappropriate risk allocations. It is the determination of how the parties actually manage and control risks, as set out in ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.80

However, it does not follow that every contractual exchange of potentially higher but riskier income for lower but less risky income between associated enterprises is automatically arm’s length. The rest of the steps set out in this section describe the information required to determine how the associated enterprises operate in relation to the assumption and management of risk leading to the accurate delineation of the actual transaction in relation to risk ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.79

It is economically neutral to take on (or lay off) risk in return for higher (or lower) anticipated nominal income as long as the net present value of both options are equal. Between unrelated parties, for example, the sale of a risky income-producing asset may reflect in part a preference of the seller to accept a lower but more certain amount of nominal income and to forego the possibility of higher anticipated nominal income it might earn if it instead retained and exploited the asset. In a without-recourse debt factoring arrangement between independent enterprises, for example, the seller discounts the face value of its receivables in return for a fixed payment, and so accepts a lower return but has reduced its volatility and laid off risk. The factor will often be a specialised organisation which has the capability to decide to take on risk and to decide on how to respond to the risk, including by diversifying the risk and ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.78

A contractual assumption of risk constitutes an ex ante agreement to bear some or all of the potential costs associated with the ex post materialisation of downside outcomes of risk in return for some or all of the potential benefit associated with the ex post materialisation of positive outcomes. Importantly, ex ante contractual assumption of risk should provide clear evidence of a commitment to assume risk prior to the materialisation of risk outcomes. Such evidence is a very important part of the tax administration’s transfer pricing analysis of risks in commercial or financial relations, since, in practice, an audit performed by the tax administration may occur years after the making of such up-front decisions by the associated enterprises and when outcomes are known. The purported assumption of risk by associated enterprises when risk outcomes are certain is by definition not an assumption of risk, since there is no longer any risk. Similarly, ex post reallocations of risk by a tax ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.77

The identity of the party or parties assuming risks may be set out in written contracts between the parties to a transaction involving these risks. A written contract typically sets out an intended assumption of risk by the parties. Some risks may be explicitly assumed in the contractual arrangements. For example, a distributor might contractually assume accounts receivable risk, inventory risk, and credit risks associated with the distributor’s sales to unrelated customers. Other risks might be implicitly assumed. For example, contractual arrangements that provide non- contingent remuneration for one of the parties implicitly allocate the outcome of some risks, including unanticipated profits or losses, to the other party ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.76

Control over a specific risk in a transaction focusses on the decision-making of the parties to the transaction in relation to the specific risk arising from the transaction. This is not to say, however, that in an MNE group other parties may not be involved in setting general policies that are relevant for the assumption and control of the specific risks identified in a transaction, without such policy-setting itself representing decision making. The board and executive committees of the group, for example, may set the level of risk the group as a whole is prepared to accept in order to achieve commercial objectives, and to establish the control framework for managing and reporting risk in its operations. Line management in business segments, operational entities, and functional departments may identify and assess risk against the commercial opportunities, and put in place appropriate controls and processes to address risk and influence the risk outcomes arising from day-to-day operations. The opportunities pursued by ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.75

In the second situation, a multinational toy retailer buys a wide range of products from a number of third-party manufacturers. Most of its sales are concentrated in the last two months of the calendar year, and a significant risk relates to the strategic direction of the buying function, and in making the right bets on trends and determining the products that will sell and in what volumes. Trends and the demand for products can vary across markets, and so expertise is needed to evaluate the right bets in the local market. The effect of the buying risk can be magnified if the retailer negotiates a period of exclusivity for a particular product with the third- party manufacturer ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.74

In the first situation the MNE group distributes heating oil to consumers. Analysis of the economically relevant characteristics establishes that the product is undifferentiated, the market is competitive, the market size is predictable, and players are price-takers. In such circumstances, the ability to influence margins may be limited. The credit terms achieved from managing the relationship with the oil suppliers fund working capital and are crucial to the distributor’s margin. The impact of the risk on cost of capital is, therefore, significant in the context of how value is created for the distribution function ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.73

Determining the economic significance of risk and how risk may affect the pricing of a transaction between associated enterprises is part of the broader functional analysis of how value is created by the MNE group, the activities that allow the MNE group to sustain profits, and the economically relevant characteristics of the transaction. The analysis of risk also helps to determine comparability under the guidance in Chapter III. Where potential comparables are identified, it is relevant to determine whether they include the same level of risks and management of risks. The economic significance of risk may be illustrated by the following two situations ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.72

Risks can be categorised in various ways, but a relevant framework in a transfer pricing analysis is to consider the sources of uncertainty which give rise to risk. The following non-exclusive list of sources of risk is not intended to suggest a hierarchy of risk. Neither is it intended to provide rigid categories of risk, since there is overlap between the categories. Instead, it is intended to provide a framework that may assist in ensuring that a transfer pricing analysis considers the range of risks likely to arise from the commercial or financial relations of the associated enterprises, and from the context in which those relations take place. Reference is made to risks that are externally driven and those that are internally driven in order to help clarify sources of uncertainty. However, there should be no inference that externally driven risks are less relevant because they are not generated directly by activities. On the contrary, the ability of a company ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.71

There are many definitions of risk, but in a transfer pricing context it is appropriate to consider risk as the effect of uncertainty on the objectives of the business. In all of a company’s operations, every step taken to exploit opportunities, every time a company spends money or generates income, uncertainty exists, and risk is assumed. A company is likely to direct much attention to identifying uncertainties it encounters, in evaluating whether and how business opportunities should be pursued in view of their inherent risks, and in developing appropriate risk mitigation strategies which are important to shareholders seeking their required rate of return. Risk is associated with opportunities, and does not have downside connotations alone; it is inherent in commercial activity, and companies choose which risks they wish to assume in order to have the opportunity to generate profits. No profit- seeking business takes on risk associated with commercial opportunities without expecting a positive return. Downside impact of risk occurs ... Read more

TPG2022 Chapter I paragraph 1.70

Assume that an investor hires a fund manager to invest funds on its account. Depending on the agreement between the investor and the fund manager, the latter may be given the authority to make portfolio investments on behalf of the investor on a day-to-day basis in a way that reflects the risk preferences of the investor, although the risk of loss in value of the investment would be borne by the investor. In such an example, the investor is controlling its risks through four relevant decisions: the decision about its risk preference and therefore about the required diversification of the risks attached to the different investments that are part of the portfolio, the decision to hire (or terminate the contract with) that particular fund manager, the decision of the extent of the authority it gives to the fund manager and objectives it assigns to the latter, and the decision of the amount of the investment that it asks this fund ... Read more