2 May 2019

Simplifying withholding tax procedures Towards lower costs of compliance

This paper intends to drive public debate on the streamlining of withholding tax procedures. A simplified withholding tax system would incentivise cross-border investment and promote Capital Market Union in the EU.

The current procedures are cumbersome, expensive, time-consuming and inconsistent. The voluntary Withholding Tax Code proposes eight areas for improvement, which we have divided into two threads, legal and tax. On the legal side, Accountancy Europe supports the development of a pan-EU legal framework for harmonising procedures. On the tax side, we offer targeted suggestions towards greater automation.

Ultimately, the EU needs a system that is easy to comply with and has improved audit capabilities. Although the Withholding Tax Code is voluntary, we hope that Member States will take notice and implement its recommendations.

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