Turkey signs pact to prevent tax avoidance, evasion
PARIS - Anadolu AgencyThe Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty Related Measures to Prevent Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) was signed by ministers and high-level officials from 76 countries, including Turkey, on June 8 in Paris.
By signing a new international pact, Turkey has taken a key step forward to prevent tax avoidance and evasion by multinational enterprises, said Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Şimşek, who inked the deal on the behalf of Turkey.
“An instrument was developed to change the relevant articles of existing agreements with one convention instead of negotiating 3,000 agreements one by one,” Şimşek stated, adding that the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) should change several articles of double taxation agreements under the new pact.
The convention foresees the implementation of a series of tax treaty measures to update the existing network of bilateral tax treaties and reduce opportunities for tax avoidance by multinational enterprises, according to the OECD.
It will also strengthen provisions to resolve treaty disputes, including through mandatory binding arbitration, thereby reducing double taxation and increasing tax certainty, the organization underlined.
According to the OECD, revenue losses from BEPS are conservatively estimated at $100-240 billion annually, or the equivalent of 4-10 percent of global corporate income tax revenues.
Şimşek said differences in tax regulations and countries’ implementation might lead to gaps in the system.
“Some multinational enterprises benefit from this gap by trying to transfer their profits to countries and regions which have a low- or no-tax environment,” he said.
Şimşek said G-20 finance ministers called on the OECD to develop an action plan to prevent such moves in 2013.
The implementation and monitoring of BEPS action plans, along with enabling tax system transparency and boosting the participation of developing countries in the international taxation agenda, were prioritized during Turkey’s G-20 presidency through most of 2015, he said.
Considering the BEPS action plan as the most significant modernization work done in international tax system in the past century, Şimşek underlined that the action plan was completed during Turkey’s G-20 presidency.