Italy Clarifies Key Transfer Pricing Tenants

During Telefisco 2019, Italy’s annual tax conference, Italy’s tax authority clarified several transfer pricing (TP) tenants. Notably, the most important include:

  • Clarification regarding when penalty protection may be applied to TP documentation; and

  • The inapplicability of penalties for filing discrepant tax returns in the TP area.

Penalty protection
In accordance with Article 1, Paragraph 6, and Article 2, Paragraph 4 of Legislative Decree No. 471/1997, if a taxpayer provides the authorities with adequate documentation that shows TP policy was applied appropriately within intercompany transactions, penalties for administrative violations related to tax return discrepancies may not apply (i.e. “penalty protection”).

Published in: TP Week - 1 May 2019

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Italian Tax Agency Clarifies Transfer Pricing Adjustments and VAT

The case in the tax ruling referred to transfer pricing adjustments made to permit the applicant enterprise to reach the minimum profit level provided in the group TP policy.

Specifically, the applicant company provided goods and services to a related company. According to an agreement between them, the former received remuneration from the latter for the difference between the amount of profit actually realised and the amount of profit at arm’s length. The question raised was whether or not such remuneration was relevant for VAT purposes.

Published in: TP Week - 7 November 2018

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Transfer Pricing and Double Taxation: Italy’s Downward Adjustment Procedure

Published in: TP Week - 6 June 2018

The new rules (regulation - Provvedimento 108954/2018) were issued on 30 May 2018, following a public consultation launched in February 2018. The new regulation follows the amendments introduced in 2017 for Italian transfer pricing rules. Such amendments provided for an extended taxpayer’s right to request downward adjustment in connection with the correct application of the arm’s-length principle.

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Italy Refines Transfer Pricing Methodology

Published on: TP Week - 24 May 2018

On May 14 2018, the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance issued a decree providing guidelines for the application of the Italian transfer pricing provisions, following relevant public consultation (the decree).

The Italian transfer pricing provisions, art. 110 para. 7 of the Italian Income Tax Code, had been amended in 2017 in line with the OECD Guidelines, as updated in July 2017 following the BEPS project.
The decree is composed of nine articles and in line with the OECD Guidelines on transfer pricing – these have been explicitly taken into account, according to the preamble. Further implementing provisions are expected to be issued by the Italian Revenue Agency, in particular with regards to updates of the OECD Guidelines.

In more detail, concerning the concept of control, the decree confirms the approach of the tax administration requiring verification of legal as well as economic control for the application of transfer pricing regulations.
The decree also adopts the notion of comparability as provided in the OECD Guidelines. For the assessment of comparability, it affirms the need to proceed with the analysis of the economically significant characteristics of the transactions (contractual terms, functional analysis, characteristics of goods and services, economic circumstances, company strategies).

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Italy Holds Public Consultation on New Transfer Pricing Rules

Published in: TP Week

On April 24 2017, the Italian provision on transfer pricing, article 110 paragraph 7 of the Italian Income Tax Code, was amended to clearly and definitively define and establish the principle of open-market conditions.
According to the amended provision, profit from transactions between Italian enterprises and related foreign enterprises shall be estimated “by reference to the conditions and prices that would have been agreed between subjects operating in open market conditions under comparable circumstances”.

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Italy’s Tax Police Publishes Manual against Tax Evasion and Fraud

Published in: TP Week

On December 4 2017, the Italian Financial Guard (Tax Police), updated its practical guidelines regarding performance of tax audits with the release of the Operational Manual against evasion and tax fraud – Circular n. 1/2018 (circular).
The circular was updated on December 1 2017 and entered into effect on 1 January 1 2018.
Transfer pricing is one of the subjects detailed in the circular. Following specification of the applicable rules and recent OECD developments, the circular illustrates the practical procedures for transfer pricing audits.

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CbCR Obligations for Italian Entity Members of US Groups

Published in: TPWeek

An agreement for the automatic exchange of country-by-country reports (CbCR) between Italy and the US (Agreement) came into effect on September 27 2017, as announced by the Italian minister for economy and finance.
The above agreement derives its legal basis from Art. 26 of the Convention for the Avoidance of Double Taxation in effect between the US and Italy.

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Cooperative Compliance: The Italian Framework

Published in: TPWeek

On May 26 2017 the Italian regime on cooperative compliance was further clarified by the Italian Revenue Agency (IRA or tax administration) by virtue of a new regulation (provvedimento). Antonella Della Rovere and Federico Vincenti of Valente Associati GEB Partners explain.

The Italian framework of cooperative compliance has been built since 2014, when it was envisaged by law as part of a set of measures to establish a fairer, more transparent and growth-oriented national tax system.

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Italy: Changes to the TP Framework

On April 24 2017, a new law decree (N. 50/2017) introduced changes to the Italian transfer pricing framework. Antonella Della Rovere and Federico Vincenti from Valente Associati GEB Partners look at the changes.

In a nutshell, the Italian provision on transfer pricing (art. 110 para. 7 of the Italian Income Tax Code) was amended to clearly and definitively encompass the principle of open market conditions.

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Suitable TP Documents Could Prevent Penalties in Italy: But What Is “Suitable”?

Published in: TP Week

Multinationals with activities in Italy can get rid of penalties for tax avoidance if they opt to supply the Italian revenue authorities with comprehensive transfer pricing TP documents supporting their group’s TP policies.
Antonella Della Rovere and Federico Vincenti of Valente Associati GEB Partners explain how this works in practice.

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Transfer Pricing: 'Broad-Based' Control Concept Pursuant to Italian Courts

Published in: TP Week, May 25, 2016

Article 110, paragraph 7 of the TUIR (i.e., Italian Income Tax Code, hereinafter, “TUIR”), related to the Italian Transfer Pricing regime, establishes that in order for the above rule to be applicable, one of the companies involved in the intercompany transaction must exercise control over another company, or that both be under common control.

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