On May 25, 2016, the EC adopted rules on the reporting by multinational companies of tax-related information and exchange of that information between member states, aiming at the harmonized implementation in the EU of the OECD anti-BEPS Action 13 on country-by-country (CbC) reporting by multinational companies.
The new rules will be adopted by amending Directive 2011/16/EU on mandatory automatic exchange of information in the field of taxation. The amended Directive will be a legally binding EU instrument applicable for groups of companies with total consolidated group revenue of at least EUR 750 million.
The CbC report must be available as of the reporting period commencing on or after 1 January 2016. The report shall be filed with the tax authorities of the member state where the group’s parent company is a tax resident. If the parent company is not an EU tax resident and does not file a report, it must do so through its EU subsidiaries. Such “secondary reporting” will be optional for the 2016 fiscal year but mandatory as from the 2017 fiscal year.
The Directive requires tax authorities to exchange CbC reports automatically and builds on the EU's existing framework for automatic exchange between tax authorities, established by Directive 2011/16/EU. An existing common communications network will be used, thereby saving implementation costs.
CbC filing deadlines are as follows:
- 12 months after the end of the fiscal year for companies to file the information; and
- A further three months for tax administrations to automatically exchange the information.
The principal aim of the new CbC reporting requirement is to prevent multinational companies from exploiting the technicalities of a tax system, or mismatches between different tax systems, in order to reduce or avoid their tax liabilities.