Finance

Business group concerned about new tax recommendations

A top business lobby says its worried that new international tax recommendations could put sensitive business information at risk.

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) said Thursday that the project from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development would "impose substantial and unnecessary compliance costs on manufacturers." 

The Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project is aimed at tamping down corporate use of tax havens and the sophisticated strategies that allow many multinational corporations to lower their tax bills across the globe.

Dorothy Coleman, NAM's vice president for tax policy, said the group was particularly worried about a proposal that would force companies to give detailed reports on business operations to revenue collectors.

"In some cases, the rules would force companies to share highly sensitive business information with foreign tax authorities without any confidentiality protections," Coleman said. "At a minimum, U.S. policymakers should do all they can to minimize the compliance burden of information disclosure and ensure that U.S. companies are not required to disclose sensitive, proprietary business information."

OECD officials say it's important to put minimum standards on tax avoidance into place and that they're only looking to ensure that companies pay taxes wherever they conduct economic activity.

Top GOP lawmakers are also skeptical of the project from the OECD, a Paris-based research group of almost three dozen countries. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said the recommendations could burden American businesses and put more pressure on them to move abroad. 

Ryan and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) have also questioned whether the Obama administration can implement the country-by-country reporting standards.

Outbrain
View desktop version