Over the past weeks, in-house tax professionals have been
telling me that this is set to change the tax structures of
almost all multinationals, no matter what sector they're
For years, tax strategies have been geared around dealing
with the US's outlying headline rate and system, but they will
now need to be overhauled to suit the new reality – a
reality which most of us are still working to understand.
But it's not only companies that have jumped into action;
the 'race to the bottom' on corporate tax rates narrative will
get plenty of airtime this year, with French President Emmanuel
Macron mentioning it in his Davos speech, and across the
Pacific from the US we've already seen China introduce
retroactive incentives to keep companies on-side. But which of
the world's superpowers has the more attractive tax system now?
We explore this on page 18.
Beyond tax reform, companies also have to contend with the
ever-growing appetite among politicians, the public and the
media for greater transparency. We caught up with firebrand tax
campaigner and politician Margaret Hodge, for an exclusive
interview on page 25.
And while companies gear up, on the one hand, for the first
release of country-by-country reports, and rapidly approaching
implementation dates across a range of BEPS action points, on
the other they must be looking into the future and preparing
for the opportunities and difficulties that technology in
taxation is already starting to bring (see page 28 on the
complex world of taxation and robots).
There is also the taxation of the digital economy to take
stock of. Italy has agreed plans for a unilateral measure
targeting transactions – but is this really the right
approach if, as BEPS Action 1 taught us, the digital economy
is the economy?
Any one of these issues would, 10 years ago, have been
enough to justify some complaints about a busy year ahead. With
such a glut of risks and rewards, 2018 is set to be the busiest
year so far. What an exciting time to become editor!
From myself and everyone at International Tax
Review, the very best of luck for the year ahead. We'll be
doing our best to guide you through it online, in print and at
Editor, International Tax Review