Luxembourg



Amazon’s Luxembourg tax Deal scrutinised by the EU - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

_________________________________________

  • "Brussels is to give its first detailed criticisms of Amazon’s favourable tax arrangements in Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the European Commission is investigating sweetheart tax arrangements"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "between Amazon and the Luxembourg authorities"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Amazon Europe Holding Technologies (AEHT) receives hundreds of millions of euros in royalties each year"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "under a licensing agreement"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "with the online retailer’s main European trading business, Amazon EU Sàrl, also registered in Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "Amazon EU Sàrl is the company with which millions of shoppers are transacting when they buy goods online in the UK, Germany, France and other European countries"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "it made sales of13.6bn last year"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "but posted pre-tax profits of just23.3m"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "after revenues were offset by large expenses, including € 637m loosely described in the accounts"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "as primarily charges related to licence agreements and royalties with third parties and affiliated undertakings"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "from 2007 to 2013, the partnership received € 3.31bn of income thanks to "agreements with affiliated companies""

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "AEHT paid no tax in on resulting profits for the period, which totalled1.928bn"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "European Parliament leaders deferred a decision on whether to establish a full parliamentary inquiry into the tax affairs"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "hundreds of household-name international companies are taking advantage of Luxembourg’s generous tax rulings"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the Greens in the Parliament succeeded in mustering 194 signatures in favour, more than the quarter of MEPs needed"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

Luxembourg Tax Files - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

_________________________________________

  • "dozens more multinational corporate names are dragged into the Luxembourg tax scandal following a new leak of confidential documents"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "among the new companies exposed in the secret tax documents are Disney"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "FTSE 100 firm Reckitt Benckiser"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the Skype Internet-phone arm of Microsoft"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "and Koch Industries"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the Koch empire is the second largest privately-owned business in the US and is controlled by siblings who fund rightwing political campaigns"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________
  • "Skype, the voice-over-Internet business now owned by Microsoft"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "used two Luxembourg companies and an Irish subsidiary, to circulate royalties and profits in a pattern"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "that helped its Skype Technologies unit in Luxembourg report no corporation tax over a five-year period"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the latest batch of documents show that the creation of aggressive tax structures is not limited to PwC alone"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "they include similar deals secured for big clients by the big four group of accounting firms"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Ernst & Young (EY), Deloitte and KPMG"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Skype and Koch Industries were advised by EY"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the documents detail confidential tax deals thrashed out by accountancy advisers with Luxembourg tax officials"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "they are known as "advance tax agreements" or "comfort letters""

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "and give the green light for advantageous structures to be established"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________
  • "by 2005 Skype was established as one of the great disrupters of the digital age"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "its use of the Internet to carry voice calls threatened to undermine the world’s biggest telecoms companies"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the main company in the group, Skype Technologies SA, had its headquarters in Luxembourg"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Skype Technologies arranged for certain intellectual property rights - including IP connected to SkypeOut"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "to be transferred to a new subsidiary it had created in Ireland called Skype Limited"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "in a 2005 tax agreement, Skype’s advisers from accounting firm Ernst & Young justified the valuation by explaining that"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "although some paid-for Skype services had been launched"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "it was too early to gauge whether they would be successful and profitable"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "leaked records show this explanation was accepted by the tax authorities, stamped "read and approved""

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "by the accommodating Marius Kohl, one of Luxembourg’s top tax officials"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "and that is not all Kohl rubber stamped for Skype. The group’s tax advisers also wanted assurances"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "that they could expect to enjoy yearly tax breaks on royalties"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "royalties of € 32.6m for 2006 had doubled a year later"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "by 2009, they were close to € 170m, and two years on they had exceeded € 260m"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "for each of these years, however, Skype Technologies recorded no tax in its accounts"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "a mystifying footnote simply read: "in view of the company’s tax structuring no provisions were made for corporate tax""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________
  • "Luxembourg-based Arteva Europe Sarl is a company that is easily overlooked"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "it has no paid employees and its registered office in the Grand Duchy is shared by about 670 other companies"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________
  • "despite modest outward appearances, accounts show Arteva Europe functions as a huge internal bank"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "buried within the labyrinthine financial plumbing of Koch Industries, a US$ 115bn-a-year global conglomerate"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the Koch brothers, Charles and David, are leading funders of Washington thinktank the Cato Institute, advocates of radical free market ideas"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "including expounding the virtues of tax havens and warning against G20-led efforts to curb aggressive tax avoidance by multinationals"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "leaked tax rulings from the Grand Duchy tax office - rulings secured for Koch Industries’ by advisers at Ernst & Young"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "show the group wanted to make sure Luxembourg did not have taxing rights"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "over profits Arteva Europe could demonstrate had been generated from its Swiss branch"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the Swiss authorities tax these lending units as if they were required to pay large, tax-deductible interest bills"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "even if they have no such cost"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "so attractive are these arrangements, that dozens of multinationals have set up intra-group lending operations through the Swiss branch of a Luxembourg subsidiary"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "that way, it picks up a huge tax break in Switzerland and minimises its tax bill in Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________
  • "the Finance Ministers of France, Germany and Italy demanded a clampdown on Luxembourg-based tax avoidance"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "in a letter to the EC’s Commissioner for Economic Affairs, Pierre Moscovici:"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "our citizens and our companies expect us to cope with tax avoidance and aggressive planning"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

______________________________________________________________________________

Luxembourg rubber-stamped Tax Avoidance on industrial Scale - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

_________________________________________

  • "thousands of leaked documents showing how large companies cooperated with the Luxembourg tax authorities"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the results were billions of dollars worth of savings for the companies on their tax bills"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "taxes which would otherwise have been paid to the exchequers of other countries, including Luxembourg’s fellow EU members"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the documents also show how some 340 companies from around the world"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "arranged specially-designed corporate structures with the Luxembourg authorities"

 

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "this include the corporations: Pepsi, Ikea, Accenture, Burberry"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Procter & Gamble, Heinz, JP Morgan, and FedEx"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the Coach handbag firm, drugs group Abbott Laboratories"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • " Amazon, Deutsche Bank and Australian financial group Macquarie"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "more than 80 journalists in 26 countries, working in collaboration through the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, have spent six months scrutinising the leaked papers"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the papers largely relate to clients of PricewaterhouseCoopers"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "PwC is one of the largest tax advisory groups in the world"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Luxembourg acting as a go-between, both enabling and masking tax avoidance, which always takes place beyond its borders"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the documents are mainly advance tax agreements - known as comfort letters"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "these ATAs are typically schemes put to the Luxembourg tax authorities which reduce tax bills substantially"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "these deals amounted to more than US$ 215bn of loans and investments between 2002 and 2010"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "given that many more leaked papers did not disclose sums involved, and that PwC was just one of several accounting firms which secure deals with the Luxembourg tax authorities"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the full scale of financial flows through Luxembourg, facilitated by comfort letters from the Grand Duchy’s officials, is likely to be much higher"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "many large private equity investments are also the subject of Luxembourg ATAs"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "buyout firms such as Blackstone and Carlyle appear in the leaked documents"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Luxembourg investment vehicles are commonplace in such investment firms"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________
  • "the documents reveal a number of financial structures which were approved by the Luxembourg tax authorities"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "one of the more common is based on cross-border lending within a group of companies"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "and a mismatch between the perceptions of Luxembourg and overseas tax authorities"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "one of Shire’s (a multinational drug firm) Luxembourg units has made US$ 1.87bn in profits in the last five years"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "largely from making loans to sister companies, as it charged interest rates of up to 9% on those loans"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "the enormous profits generated by this unit were taxed at a fraction of 1%"

 

 

 

 

 


_________________________________________

  • "Shire’s tax advisers told the Luxembourg tax authorities that this unusual lending within the same legal entity"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "had transformed the drug group’s wider activities in the Grand Duchy into a lending conduit"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "such a chain of back-to-back lending, advisers from PwC argued, effectively meant Shire’s intra-group loans"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "were only passing through Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "in Shire’s case, PwC suggested, the Grand Duchy should be satisfied taxing just "1/64%""

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "that is 0.0156% - of the billions in loans and interest"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________
  • "Luxembourg is a tax haven"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "offering a range of ways in which payments that reduce a multinational’s taxable profits"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "in a country such as the UK or US can escape tax when received in the Grand Duchy"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "these include: exempting income diverted to foreign branches of Luxembourg companies in places like Switzerland and Ireland"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "tax relief for paper investment losses"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "and the approval of complex ‘hybrid’ financial instruments and corporate structures within its borders"

 

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "this is the real harm that tax havens like Luxembourg cause"

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "they turn "tax competition" into a global race to the bottom"

 

 

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "depleting the contributions of major corporations and leaving citizens to pick up the tab"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

______________________________________________________________________________



Amazon-Steuerdeal offenbar illegal - der Standard: LINK ¤ der STANDARD

_________________________________________

  • "Luxemburg hat dem US-Internetriesen Amazon laut Prüfern der EU-Kommission"

 

_________________________________________

  • "durch massive Steuervorteile unerlaubte Staatsbeihilfe gewährt"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "die Luxemburger Steuerbehörden haben im Jahr 2003 nur elf Arbeitstage für die Genehmigung der Steuervereinbarung benötigt"

 

_________________________________________

  • "die Vereinbarung gilt unverändert seit 2003 und damit viel länger als Übereinkommen in anderen EU-Staaten sowie unabhängig davon, dass der Umsatz von Amazon seither fast um das 15-Fache gestiegen ist"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Almunias Ermittlern zufolge hat in Luxemburg ein Ableger namens LuxOpCo als Hauptquartier der Amazon-Aktivitäten in Europa fungiert und die Webseiten des Konzerns in der Region gesteuert"

 

_________________________________________

  • "der Umsatz von LuxOpCo betrug im Jahr 2013 13,6 Milliarden Euro, rund ein Fünftel des weltweiten Amazon-Umsatzes"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "LuxOpCo wiederum hat Geld an die Firma Lux SCS übertragen, die keine Steuern in Luxemburg abführte"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "die tatsächlichen Abgaben an den Staat wirkten wie eine "kosmetische Vereinbarung""

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

Lux-Leaks-Affäre erreicht Disney - der Standard:
LINK ¤ der STANDARD

_________________________________________

  • "neue Dokumente belasten Großkonzerne wie Skype und Disney sowie die vier weltgrößten Wirtschaftsprüfer"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "in den Dokumenten werden insgesamt 35 Firmen belastet"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "die Firmen ließen sich mit den Absprachen, den sogenannten Advance Tax Agreements"

 

_________________________________________

  • "Steuerraten von zum Teil weniger als einem Prozent auf die nach Luxemburg verlagerten Gewinne zusichern"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der US-Unterhaltungskonzern Disney gründete in Luxemburg eine konzerninterne Bank"

 

_________________________________________

  • "die ihre Gewinne mit weniger als einem Prozent versteuerte"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der Internettelefondienst Skype bekam seit dem Jahr 2005 einen Steuerrabatt von bis zu 95 Prozent"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "betroffen ist auch der Hygieneartikelhersteller Reckitt Benckiser (RB), an dem die deutsche Industriellenfamilie Reimann beteiligt ist"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der kanadische Verkehrstechnikkonzern Bombardier"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der US-Mischkonzern Koch Industries und Telecom Italia"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "die Absprachen wurden zwischen 2003 und 2011 getroffen. Durch diese Abmachungen lassen sich Firmen von den Behörden im Voraus vorteilhafte Steuerkonstrukte absegnen"

 

_________________________________________

  • "die Dokumente belegen außerdem, dass fast alle großen Beraterfirmen mit der Luxemburger Verwaltung zusammengearbeitet haben"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "neben Pricewaterhouse-Coopers auch Deloitte, Ernst & Young sowie KPMG"

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

Ärger im Steuer-Märchenland - Süddeutsche Zeitung: LINK ¤ SÜDDEUTSCHE ZEITUNG

_________________________________________

  • "die Luxemburger Behörden sind wohlwollend. Und eine ganze Heerschar findiger Berater steht bereit"

 

_________________________________________

  • "um die Abgabenlast für Konzerne durch umstrittene Steuermodelle kleinzurechnen"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der Mann mit dem Spitznamen "Mr. Ruling" ist jemand, den man kennt im Großherzogtum, in der Politik genauso wie in der Beraterbranche"

 

_________________________________________

  • "unter seinem echten Namen Marius Kohl war der 61-Jährige bis zu seiner Pensionierung im vergangenen Jahr Leiter der Steuerabteilung "Sociétés 6""

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "auf seinem Schreibtisch landeten die Fälle der großen multinationalen Firmen"

 

_________________________________________

  • "die geheime Abmachungen mit Luxemburg erbaten - sogenannte tax rulings, daher der Spitzname"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "mit diesen individuellen "rulings" genehmigte Luxemburg den globalen Konzernen zum Teil absurde Steuervermeidungskonstruktionen"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "mit Steuersätzen von weniger als einem Prozent"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "hier empfing er die Steuerexperten der Beratungsgesellschaft Pricewaterhouse-Coopers (PwC), das belegen Hunderte geheime Steuerdokumente"

 

_________________________________________

  • "die Berater von PwC stellten im Namen ihrer Kunden"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "darunter Konzernen wie Ikea, Pepsi, Eon oder Deutsche Bank - die Pläne der Firmen vor"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "kaum einer wurde enttäuscht, nach spätestens ein bis zwei persönlichen Treffen wurde ein schriftlicher Antrag eingereicht, den Marius Kohl oft noch am selben Tag positiv beschied"

 

_________________________________________

  • "und an manchen Tagen genehmigte Kohl die Anträge fast seriell, bis zu 54 an einem Tag"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der Steuerschaden, den allein diese "rulings" in den europäischen Nachbarstaaten angerichtet haben"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "ist gigantisch"

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "Konzerne gründen Niederlassungen im Großherzogtum, obwohl sie ihre eigentlichen Geschäfte in anderen Ländern machen"

 

_________________________________________

  • "und verschieben dann ihre Gewinne - zum Beispiel getarnt als Zinsen - nach Luxemburg"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der Ketchup-Pionier Heinz, der Apple-Ableger iTunes"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der Konsumgüterriese Procter & Gamble und der Tabakhersteller British American Tobacco"

 

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der Dokumentenschatz besteht zumeist aus sogenannten "Advance Tax Agreements" von fast 350 Unternehmen, angefertigt von den Beratern von PwC"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "so findet man Luxemburger Firmen, die mit der Deutschen Bank verbunden sind"

 

_________________________________________

  • "die Unterlagen belegen, wie der Finanzkonzern jahrelang komplizierte Konstruktionen aufsetzte"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "zum anderen agierte die Deutsche Bank auch als Dienstleister und half etwa einem finnischen Unternehmen"

 

_________________________________________

  • "Gewinne aus Geschäften in Russland nach Luxemburg umzuleiten. Dort wurden die Profite kaum besteuert"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der deutsche Energieversorger Eon leitete Milliardenbeträge von Luxemburg aus an andere Tochterunternehmen weltweit"

 

_________________________________________

  • "meist als konzerninterne Darlehen"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "im Gegenzug wurden Profite aus diesen Ländern als Zinsen abgeschöpft"

 

_________________________________________

  • "und so die Gewinne und damit auch die Steuerlast in diesen Ländern reduziert"

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

  • "all die Konstruktionen lassen sich sehr genau beschreiben, da die Berater von PwC der Luxemburger Steuerbehörde detailliert darlegen, was der jeweilige Konzern plant"

 

_________________________________________

  • "und: weshalb am Ende kaum oder keine Steuern anfallen"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "auf Einkommen aus Lizenzgebühren, Dividenden, Zinsen oder Kapitalerträge"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "das US-amerikanische Kurierunternehmen FedEx etwa musste nach Luxemburg verbrachte Gewinne"

 

_________________________________________

  • "mit nicht einmal 0,1 Prozent versteuern"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "in einer internen Kunden-Präsentation beschreiben die PwC-Berater Luxemburg"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "als Ort mit flexiblen Behörden"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

Luxemburg will Steuer-Trickserei ade sagen - der Standard: LINK ¤ der STANDARD

_________________________________________

  • "die Luxemburger Regierung will nach Worten von Außenminister Jean Asselborn nicht mehr mit Unternehmen zusammenarbeiten, die Steuern vermeiden wollen"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "Luxemburg darf kein Ort sein, der Firmen willkommen heißt, die keine Steuern zahlen wollen"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "für solche Tricksereien stehe das Land nicht mehr zur Verfügung"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "die jüngsten Enthüllungen über Steuersparmodelle für ausländische Unternehmen nennt der Minister einen Schlag"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "der den Ruf Luxemburgs hart trifft"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

______________________________________________________________________________

LUXEMBOURG - Wikipedia EN:
LINK ¤ LUXEMBOURG

_________________________________________

  • "officially the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, is a landlocked country in Western Europe"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "as a representative democracy with a constitutional monarch, it is headed by a grand duke and is the world's only remaining grand duchy"

 

 

_________________________________________

  • "it is bordered by Belgium to the west and north, Germany to the east, and France to the south"

 

 

 

_________________________________________

  • Population: 562.958

 

 

 

_________________________________________

LETZEBUERG - Wikipedia LB: LINK ¤ LETZEBUERG
_________________________________________

Luxembourg - Map: LINK ¤ WIKIMEDIA
______________________________________________________________________________




luxembourg - 14049LB
designed by Free CSS Templates | powerd by pluck | hosted by akis