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BEPS Tax Event

07/12/15

Marks Sattin would like to thank everyone who attended our BEPS breakfast seminar on Thursday 26th November. Senior tax professionals from various organisations came together at Flemings Hotel in Mayfair to discuss topical and challenging areas in relation to the current BEPS initiative. We were also joined by Tom Aston, Senior Tax Partner at KPMG who was a fantastic focal point of technical expertise and insight.

Key discussion points

An area of concern for many who attend the event was the commercial difficulties of complying with country by country reporting requirements under the BEPS regime. There was a general consensus that there are lots of ambiguities and uncertainty in this area, in particular issues around the CBCR template.

The size of data being handled by local authorities was discussed in terms of their ability to effectively deal with the volume being sent to them. There were mixed opinions on this area however it was mentioned that previous requirements by authorities to obtain large amounts of data, such as the implementation of the disclosure rules, was actually turned around relatively quickly and efficiently.

From a systems perspective it’s very difficult to link global tax initiatives with existing localised accounting software. This developed into a wider discussion around the types of advice practice firms such as the Big 4 are offering in this area and in particular whether tax technology solutions to assist companies in complying specifically with BEPS will increase in line with the current boom in tax management consulting services.

In terms of internal commercial recognition it was mentioned that the arrival of BEPS had given tax functions more involvement with senior stakeholders within businesses. There is certainly a consensus that companies want to ensure their stance and position in respect of BEPS was compliant with the OECD guidelines. Whilst at this stage there does not seem to be a dramatic increase in headcount for permanent BEPS related roles internally, we agreed there will be increased activity in contract and temporary roles. It was further discussed that when forecasting future ETR increases the full impact of BEPS may have a larger impact on the desire to hire more permanent heads in the future.

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