It is argued th**at the higher degree of economic integration across borders and the international trend towards a reduction of corporate income tax rates have had a significant impact on the Danish corporate tax regime in recent years. Accordingly, during the last ten years the Danish statutory corporate tax rate has been lowered further, while several government actions at the same time have been taken in order to combat international tax avoidance and evasion. As a result, new anti-avoidance provisions have been introduced and some of the older anti-avoidance provisions have been tightened in order to prevent base erosion and profit shifting. Thus, to some extent Denmark has already tried to address a number of the key pressure areas mentioned in the recently published OECD BEPS report, such as international mismatches in entity and instrument characterization, the tax treatment of related party debt financing, transfer pricing and the effectiveness of anti-avoidance measures. However, the article concludes that these anti-avoidance provisions often suffer from being quite complex, very broad in scope and open to criticism from an EU law perspective.
The author explores whether legal pragmatism may function as a useful and adequate explanatory model for the case law on tax avoidance unfolding in the Danish Supreme Court. In doing so, the underlying ideas of philosophical and legal pragmatism are initially re-visited while the general interpretational approach of the Danish judiciary is briefly outlined. Subsequently, the general approach to interpretation of Danish tax law is presented and the prevailing opinions on tax avoidance in the Danish doctrine are touched upon. This provide the necessary foundation for the following legal analysis of the Danish Supreme Courts’ case law on tax avoidance. Based on this analysis, it is concluded that legal pragmatism may actually function as a useful and adequate explanatory model for the Danish Supreme Court's case law on tax avoidance. Awareness of this pragmatic inclination may facilitate a better understanding of the Danish Supreme Court's approach in difficult cases on tax avoidance and enhance the possibilities of predicting the outcome of such cases.
The article analyzes whether the investment in a private equity fund may create a permanent establishment (PE) for foreign investors. The analysis is divided into two main parts, as the question of creating a PE for the foreign investors is considered with respect to both the main PE rule and the agency PE rule. The amendments to the PE definition prescribed in the OECD/G20 BEPS report on Action 7, and incorporated into the 2017 version of the OECD Model with Commentary, are taken into consideration. It is concluded that the final outcome depends on the specific setup of the private equity fund at hand and that some degree of uncertainty may often remain. Moreover, the recent amendments to the PE definition do not appear to have reduced this uncertainty—rather the contrary.
Recently, the controlled foreign company (CFC) rules have gained increased attention; as such, rules play an important role in the ongoing efforts of the OECD/G20 and the European Commission with respect to addressing base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS). In this context, the article revisits the CFC regimes of the Nordic countries in order to assess whether these regimes are in line with the recommendations from the OECD/G20 and to determine whether Sweden, Finland, and Denmark, as EU member states, will have to make amendments if the commission’s proposal for an Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive is adopted in its current form. It is concluded that the Nordic CFC regimes in many ways already are in line with the recommendations as well as the directive, but also that certain amendments have to be made.
This contribution analyzes the origin and creation of Denmark’s tax treaty network in a historical perspective. The development of the Danish treaty network is studied through an international perspective and by discussing a number of milestone events. It is concluded that the general tendency has pointed toward a continuously growing Danish treaty network and also that the question on abuse of the treaties has become of greater concern during the past decades. Moreover, it is argued that the growing number and importance of Denmark’s tax treaties over time created a need for the Danish parliament to be more directly involved in the conclusion of new tax treaties.