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Skatteflyktsbestämmelser i EU – En studie av EU-rättens påverkan på medlemsstaternas skatteflyktsbestämmelser genom positiv och negativ harmonisering

Nilsson, Sofie LU (2015) LAGM01 20151
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Inom EU är den direkta beskattningsrätten endast i begränsad utsträckning harmoniserad. Det innebär att medlemsstaterna till stor del kvarhåller sin suveränitet, vilket medför att de får utforma sina skattesystem efter vad de anser vara lämpligt. EUD kan dock pröva nationella skattereglers förenlighet med de grundläggande fördragsfriheterna. Harmonisering av medlemsstaternas skatteregler på den direkta beskattningens område sker genom EUD:s rättspraxis och genom direktiv. EUD:s praxis innebär en negativ harmonisering. Direktiv omfattas av den positiva harmoniseringen.

Skattebaserosion, vilket innebär att skattebasen i länder med en hög skattesats minskar, är ett allvarligt hot för länder då skatteintäkter är nödvändigt för att samhället... (More)
Inom EU är den direkta beskattningsrätten endast i begränsad utsträckning harmoniserad. Det innebär att medlemsstaterna till stor del kvarhåller sin suveränitet, vilket medför att de får utforma sina skattesystem efter vad de anser vara lämpligt. EUD kan dock pröva nationella skattereglers förenlighet med de grundläggande fördragsfriheterna. Harmonisering av medlemsstaternas skatteregler på den direkta beskattningens område sker genom EUD:s rättspraxis och genom direktiv. EUD:s praxis innebär en negativ harmonisering. Direktiv omfattas av den positiva harmoniseringen.

Skattebaserosion, vilket innebär att skattebasen i länder med en hög skattesats minskar, är ett allvarligt hot för länder då skatteintäkter är nödvändigt för att samhället ska fungera. Av den här anledningen försöker länder skydda skattebasen genom skatteflyktsbestämmelser. Uppsatsen syftar till att analysera hur EU-rätten genom negativ och positiv harmonisering påverkar medlemsstaternas skatteflyktsbestämmelser.

EUD:s praxis klargör att nationella skatteflyktsbestämmelser kan motiveras av två rättfärdigandegrunder: behovet att förhindra skatteflykt och behovet att bevara den väl avvägda fördelningen av beskattningsrätten mellan medlemsstaterna. Utöver detta uppställer rättspraxis krav, inom ramen för proportionalitetsprincipen, på att nationella skatteflyktsbestämmelser är rättssäkra.

I januari 2015 införde EU en obligatorisk generalklausul i moder- och dotterbolagsdirektivet. Generalklausulen underlättar medlemsstaternas försök att rättfärdiga nationella skatteflyktsbestämmelser, om de är utformade utifrån moder- och dotterbolagsdirektivets generalklausul. Det beror på att skatteflyktsbestämmelser med ursprung i EU är mindre troliga att strida mot den fria rörligheten vid EUD:s prövning än skatteflykts- bestämmelser med ursprung i medlemsstaterna.

Sammanfattningsvis visar uppsatsen på att EUD:s praxisutveckling och introduktionen av en generalklausul i moder- och dotterbolagsdirektivet innebär att EU har en större förståelse för medlemsstaternas behov av skatteflyktsbestämmelser. Vidare belyser analysen som företas i uppsatsen att EU har en stor påverkan på nationella skatteflyktsbestämmelser både genom positiv och negativ harmonisering. Vilket ursprung en skatteflykts- bestämmelse har och vilken form av harmonisering bestämmelsen bygger på avgör dess EU-förenlighet. En skatteflyktsbestämmelse med ursprung i EU, som är skapad under påverkan av positiv harmonisering, är i större utsträckning EU-förenlig än en skatteflyktsbestämmelse med ursprung i medlemsstaterna, som kan vara skapad under påverkan av negativ harmonisering. (Less)
Abstract
In the EU, member states maintain the right to design their own tax systems but direct taxation rules are harmonised through EUD case law and EU directives. The EUD examines national tax rules for compatability with the freedom of movement provisions that underpin the union. Its case law and EU directives constitute negative and positive harmonisation, respectively. Despite this, direct taxation remains relatively uncoordinated within the EU.

Taxation is one of the most important revenue sources in order to maintain a functioning society. Therefore, tax base erosion – i.e. when a country with a high tax rate loses tax revenue due to profit shifting – poses a serious financial threat to a country’s wellbeing. In order to prevent tax base... (More)
In the EU, member states maintain the right to design their own tax systems but direct taxation rules are harmonised through EUD case law and EU directives. The EUD examines national tax rules for compatability with the freedom of movement provisions that underpin the union. Its case law and EU directives constitute negative and positive harmonisation, respectively. Despite this, direct taxation remains relatively uncoordinated within the EU.

Taxation is one of the most important revenue sources in order to maintain a functioning society. Therefore, tax base erosion – i.e. when a country with a high tax rate loses tax revenue due to profit shifting – poses a serious financial threat to a country’s wellbeing. In order to prevent tax base erosion, states establish tax avoidance rules. This thesis analyses the impact of EU law on national tax avoidance rules through positive and negative harmonisation.

EUD case law dictates that national tax avoidance rules can be justified based on two grounds of justification: the need to prevent tax avoidance and the need to protect the balanced allocation of taxing powers between member states. Furthermore, it requires that member states’ tax avoidance rules are legally certain within the principle of proportionality.

In January 2015, the EU introduced a binding general anti-avoidance rule in the Parent-Subsidiary Directive. The general anti-avoidance rule makes it easier for member states to justify their national tax avoidance rules if they comply with the general anti-avoidance rule in the Parent-Subsidiary Directive. The reason is that tax avoidance rules that originate from the EU are less likely to conflict with the freedom of movement provisions than those originating from member states.

This thesis demonstrates that the development of EUD case law and the introduction of a general anti-avoidance rule in the Parent-Subsidiary Directive means that the EU has a greater understanding of the member states’ need for tax avoidance rules. It also shows that the EU has a great impact on national tax avoidance rules through positive and negative harmonisation. The form of harmonisation and the origin of the tax avoidance rules determine whether or not they comply with EU law. A tax avoidance rule originating from the EU, which is created under the influence of positive harmonisation, is more likely to conform with EU law than a tax avoidance rule originating from a member state, which can be created under influence of negative harmonisation. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Nilsson, Sofie LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
Tax avoidance rules in the EU – A study on how EU law impacts member state's tax avoidance rules through positive and negative harmonisation
course
LAGM01 20151
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
EU-rätt, skatterätt, skatteflyktsbestämmelse, skatteflyktsregel, moder- och dotterbolagsdirektivet, skattebaserosion
language
Swedish
id
5425325
date added to LUP
2015-06-05 12:43:19
date last changed
2015-06-05 12:43:19
@misc{5425325,
  abstract     = {In the EU, member states maintain the right to design their own tax systems but direct taxation rules are harmonised through EUD case law and EU directives. The EUD examines national tax rules for compatability with the freedom of movement provisions that underpin the union. Its case law and EU directives constitute negative and positive harmonisation, respectively. Despite this, direct taxation remains relatively uncoordinated within the EU.

Taxation is one of the most important revenue sources in order to maintain a functioning society. Therefore, tax base erosion – i.e. when a country with a high tax rate loses tax revenue due to profit shifting – poses a serious financial threat to a country’s wellbeing. In order to prevent tax base erosion, states establish tax avoidance rules. This thesis analyses the impact of EU law on national tax avoidance rules through positive and negative harmonisation.

EUD case law dictates that national tax avoidance rules can be justified based on two grounds of justification: the need to prevent tax avoidance and the need to protect the balanced allocation of taxing powers between member states. Furthermore, it requires that member states’ tax avoidance rules are legally certain within the principle of proportionality.

In January 2015, the EU introduced a binding general anti-avoidance rule in the Parent-Subsidiary Directive. The general anti-avoidance rule makes it easier for member states to justify their national tax avoidance rules if they comply with the general anti-avoidance rule in the Parent-Subsidiary Directive. The reason is that tax avoidance rules that originate from the EU are less likely to conflict with the freedom of movement provisions than those originating from member states.

This thesis demonstrates that the development of EUD case law and the introduction of a general anti-avoidance rule in the Parent-Subsidiary Directive means that the EU has a greater understanding of the member states’ need for tax avoidance rules. It also shows that the EU has a great impact on national tax avoidance rules through positive and negative harmonisation. The form of harmonisation and the origin of the tax avoidance rules determine whether or not they comply with EU law. A tax avoidance rule originating from the EU, which is created under the influence of positive harmonisation, is more likely to conform with EU law than a tax avoidance rule originating from a member state, which can be created under influence of negative harmonisation.},
  author       = {Nilsson, Sofie},
  keyword      = {EU-rätt,skatterätt,skatteflyktsbestämmelse,skatteflyktsregel,moder- och dotterbolagsdirektivet,skattebaserosion},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Skatteflyktsbestämmelser i EU – En studie av EU-rättens påverkan på medlemsstaternas skatteflyktsbestämmelser genom positiv och negativ harmonisering},
  year         = {2015},
}