Understanding the OECD tax plan to address 'base erosion and profit shifting' – BEPS

29-06-2017

Action to fight corporate tax avoidance has been deemed necessary in the OECD forum, with further impetus from the G20/OECD 'Base erosion and profit shifting' action plan (known as BEPS), initiated in 2013. The BEPS action plan has 15 actions, covering elements used in corporate tax-avoidance practices and aggressive tax-planning schemes and was endorsed in 2015. The 15 BEPS final reports are generally seen as a step in the fight against corporate tax avoidance. The action against BEPS is designed to be flexible, as a consequence of its adoption by consensus. Recommendations made in BEPS reports range from minimum standards to guidelines, and also putting in place an instrument to modify the provisions of tax treaties related to BEPS practices. Implementation is under way, and the follow-up and future of work to tackle BEPS is organised so as to provide a more inclusive framework able to involve more countries and build on cooperation between international organisations. Putting BEPS actions in place is progressing, in particular with the finalisation of the multilateral instrument aimed at implementing treaty changes envisaged in the BEPS actions. Similarly, progress is being made with regard to the implementation of the BEPS four minimum standards, and documents are being developed to support the implementation of measures addressing BEPS in lower capacity developing countries. A table noting the different fora and their participants is annexed to the briefing. This briefing updates an earlier edition, PE 580.911, of April 2016 (except the part on ‘EU policy: How BEPS actions are translated’ which is the subject of a forthcoming briefing).

Action to fight corporate tax avoidance has been deemed necessary in the OECD forum, with further impetus from the G20/OECD 'Base erosion and profit shifting' action plan (known as BEPS), initiated in 2013. The BEPS action plan has 15 actions, covering elements used in corporate tax-avoidance practices and aggressive tax-planning schemes and was endorsed in 2015. The 15 BEPS final reports are generally seen as a step in the fight against corporate tax avoidance. The action against BEPS is designed to be flexible, as a consequence of its adoption by consensus. Recommendations made in BEPS reports range from minimum standards to guidelines, and also putting in place an instrument to modify the provisions of tax treaties related to BEPS practices. Implementation is under way, and the follow-up and future of work to tackle BEPS is organised so as to provide a more inclusive framework able to involve more countries and build on cooperation between international organisations. Putting BEPS actions in place is progressing, in particular with the finalisation of the multilateral instrument aimed at implementing treaty changes envisaged in the BEPS actions. Similarly, progress is being made with regard to the implementation of the BEPS four minimum standards, and documents are being developed to support the implementation of measures addressing BEPS in lower capacity developing countries. A table noting the different fora and their participants is annexed to the briefing. This briefing updates an earlier edition, PE 580.911, of April 2016 (except the part on ‘EU policy: How BEPS actions are translated’ which is the subject of a forthcoming briefing).