Press releases

Deloitte survey: Third of Europe’s multinationals questioned to review tax strategy in response to BEPS action plan

26 November 2015

  • Nearly half of businesses surveyed in Europe have already started planning for its likely impact
  • Number of multinationals planning for impact of BEPS project in UK one of the highest
  • Businesses also report increased scrutiny of corporate tax strategies

Over a third of multinationals surveyed by Deloitte across Europe plan to review or amend their international tax strategy in response to the OECD/ G20 BEPS action plan, according to the firm’s 2015 Annual European Tax Survey. This is a significant increase from last year when only a fifth of businesses questioned indicated that they would review their tax strategy.

The OECD presented its final package of BEPS actions to G20 leaders at the Antalya summit earlier this month. Although the main impact of the BEPS action plan is not expected until 2016 it seems to be having an immediate effect with 43.5% of multinationals questioned saying that they had already started planning for its likely impact. In the UK as many as 80% of companies said they had already started planning for the impact of the BEPS Action Plan.

Just over half of businesses (53.1%) said that the BEPS Action Plan was important to their organisation’s board or leadership, which is broadly in line with last year’s results. The Netherlands, France and the UK placed a particularly high importance on the BEPS programme, with 85% of Dutch respondents, 75% of French respondents and 60% of UK respondents thinking it was important or very important.

Deloitte UK’s Head of Tax Policy, Bill Dodwell, said: “Business is clearly getting to grips with the message of international tax reform from the BEPS project - and we have noted even more interest following the release of the final Actions on 5 October. It is now clear that the Actions will translate into global change. We expect that this will be one of the areas of focus for boards of directors over the next year.”

Respondents to Deloitte’s tax survey are also increasingly seeking to develop additional disclosure around tax in their organisation’s financial statements. 52% of respondents across Europe and 74% of respondents in the UK said that there is generally an increased level of scrutiny around corporate tax strategy compared with one year ago, while 95% of UK respondents and 74% of respondents across Europe thought there is an increased level of scrutiny around corporate tax strategy compared with five years ago.

The 2015 Deloitte European Tax Survey is Deloitte’s third annual tax survey. It was conducted in Autumn 2015 and closed just before the release of the OECD/ G20’s final Base Erosion and Profit Shifting package.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) launched an Action Plan on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) in 2013 to give countries the tools they need to ensure that profits are taxed where value is created, while at the same time reducing disputes over the application of international tax rules.

End

Notes to editors

The 2015 Deloitte European Tax Survey was completed (either partially or fully) by 803 respondents, based in 28 different countries. Surveys were sent electronically and could be completed anonymously. The survey period was September 2015 and the Deloitte member firms in CIS, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Poland, Romania and Sweden did not take part. The majority of respondents (70.7%) worked in companies with more than €100million in revenues, and 55.4% were in senior leadership roles – 28% as tax director/head of tax, and 27.4% as finance director or CFO (the remainder were senior manager or manager level roles in tax, accounting and finance).

About Deloitte
In this press release references to Deloitte are references to Deloitte LLP, which is among the country's leading professional services firms.

Deloitte LLP is the United Kingdom member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), a UK private company limited by guarantee, whose member firms are legally separate and independent entities. Please see www.deloitte.co.uk/about for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms.

The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

Member of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.

Saskia Graepel
Deloitte LLP
+44 (0)20 7007 7264
sgraepel@deloitte.co.uk

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