India: more certainty for investors, or less? Actions to take regarding the latest on GAAR, TP safe harbours and subsidiary PE

By Stephen J Weerts

Recent legislative and case law developments have clarified India’s position on a number of tax and transfer pricing issues. While many of these developments are intended to increase certainty for foreign investors, a number of open questions remain. Although certainty is one element of rebuilding confidence in India, certain recent clarifications may not have the intended impact of attracting increased foreign direct investment.

The Indian Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) issued implementation rules for India’s General Anti-Abuse Rule (GAAR) on 23 September 2013. The implementation rules made the following clarifications on how the GAAR will be applied.

The rules confirmed the Indian finance minister’s January announcement that the GAAR’s effective date has been delayed until April 1 2016; and included a safe harbour rule that would exempt transactions resulting in a tax benefit of less than INR30m (just more than $800,000 or £500,000)…

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