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Draft UK Transfer Pricing Legislation Likely To Fall Foul Of EU Law

by Robin Pilgrim, LawAndTax-News.com, London

22 December 2003


Responding to UK Chancellor, Gordon Brown's recent pre-budget report, several major accounting firms have suggested that the government's 'rushed' draft transfer pricing legislation, designed to reduce the influence of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in this area of UK tax policy, is likely to conflict with EU law.

Speaking to AccountancyAge.com, Steve Hasson, head of PicewaterhouseCoopers' UK transfer pricing department, observed that:

"I don't think they've got there yet in terms of not having a difference between the UK and the rest, so there has got to be a risk of illegality here." He continued:

"This is the first stab at it. We are obviously working on a very rapid timescale and getting the law right to avoid further questions of illegality is going to be extraordinarily difficult."

Adam Craig, head of Deloitte and Touche's EU tax group supported this assertion, telling Accountancy Age that:

"If you have any difference of treatment between UK companies and EU companies then that difference will have to be justified by the UK government, probably in front of a court."


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