Tax treaties

Work underway for the development of the BEPS Multilateral Instrument

 

28/05/2015 – Work on the development of the Multilateral‎ Instrument to implement the tax treaty-related Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) Action Plan began on 27 May 2015 in Paris. As per the OECD/G20 mandate, the ad hoc Group that will complete the work under Action 15 has been established, with over 80 countries participating. At the meeting, members of the Group appointed Mr. Mike Williams of the United Kingdom as Chair, and Mr. Liao Tizhong of the People’s Republic of China, Mr. Mohammed Amine Baina of Morocco and Mrs. Kim S. Jacinto-Henares of the Philippines as Vice-Chairs. Participants also agreed on a number of procedural issues so that the substantive work can begin at an Inaugural Meeting which will take place on 5-6 November 2015 (back to back with the 20th Annual Tax Treaty Meeting for government officials which will take place on 3-4 November 2015). A number of international organisations will also be invited to participate in the work as Observers.

 

Members of the ad hoc Group are (as of 28 May 2015): Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Bhutan, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Canada, China (People’s Republic of), Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus1, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Fiji, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Latvia, Lebanon, Liberia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Singapore, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Viet Nam and Zambia.

 

The Group remains open to participation from all interested countries. Countries which are interested to join this Group are invited to contact the OECD Secretariat (multilateralinstrument@oecd.org) with the contact details of their designated qualified experts. For more information, download the overview.

 

Media queries should be directed to Pascal Saint-Amans, Director of the OECD Centre for Tax Policy and Administration (+33 6 2630 4923).

 

Background

The BEPS Project sets out 15 actions, many of which cannot be tackled without amending bilateral tax treaties. Given the sheer number of treaties in effect, implementing these changes on a treaty-by-treaty basis would be a very lengthy process.

 

Action 15 of the BEPS Project analysed the possibility of developing a multilateral instrument in order to allow countries to swiftly amend their tax treaties to implement the tax treaty-related BEPS recommendations. The report "Developing a Multilateral Instrument to Modify Bilateral Tax Treaties" concluded that such a multilateral instrument is not only feasible but also desirable, and that negotiations for the instrument should be convened quickly. A mandate to set up the ad hoc Group for the development of a multilateral instrument was developed by the OECD Committee on Fiscal Affairs and endorsed by the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors at their February 2015 meeting.

 

For further information about the OECD/G20 BEPS Project, please visit www.oecd.org/tax/beps.htm.

 

1 Note by Turkey: The information in this document with reference to "Cyprus" relates to the southern part of the Island. There is no single authority representing both Turkish and Greek Cypriot people on the Islands. Turkey recognises the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). Until a lasting and equitable solution is found within the context of the United Nations, Turkey shall preserve its position concerning the "Cyprus issue".

Note by all the European Union Member States of the OECD and the European Commission: The Republic of Cyprus is recognised by all members of the United Nations with the exception of Turkey. The information in this document relates to the area under the effective control of the Government of the Republic of Cyprus.