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Transfer pricing is a topic about which one hears much but understands little. The increasing globalisation of the world economy and complexity of multinational enterprises ensures that the sheer volume of transfer pricing expands every day. The enormous fiscal implications of transfer pricing have unfortunately led to its politicisation in recent years because of increasing doubt on the part of certain major trading nations, such as the United States, that they were receiving their "fair share" of world tax revenue. But even if political pressures were absent, transfer pricing would still not be an exact science. It involves too many imponderables and interrelates directly with business administration, which is judgmental in nature as well. Hence, transfer pricing remains a shifting ground for both taxpayers and revenue authorities.
This is the first of a series of articles surveying the current status of major transfer pricing issues from a German perspective in the context of the important developments in recent years. A list of these developments is as follows:
1. Oct. 1986 Amendment of U.S. section 482 IRC to require payments "commensurate with income" on transfers of intangible assets 2. March 1991 U.S. IRS Revenue Procedure 91-22, the legal basis for U.S. advanced pricing agreements (APAs) 3. June 1991 Regulations under section U.S. 6038A IRC (record-keeping) 4. Jan. 1992 Proposed regulations under U.S. section 482 IRC 5. Dec. 1992 Recommendations of OECD Task Force on U.S. proposed transfer pricing regulations 6. Jan. 1993 Temporary regulations under U.S. section 482 IRC 7. Feb. 1993 German Federal Tax Court decision on transfer pricing of domestic marketing subsidiaries 8. Jan. 1994 Temporary regulations under U.S. section 6662 (e) IRC (penalties) 9. June 1994 Draft OECD Transfer Pricing Guidelines, Part I 10. July 1994 Final regulations under U.S. section 482 IRC, amendments to temporary regulations under section 6662 (e) IRC 11. Jan. 1995 Entry into force of European Union Transfer Pricing Arbitration Convention 12. March 1995 Draft OECD Transfer Pricing Guidelines, Part II 13. June 1995 Publication of U.S. Announcement 95-49 with proposed changes in APA rules (Revenue Procedure 91-22) 14. July 1995 OECD Transfer Pricing Guidelines, Chapters I - V 15. Dec. 1995 Final regulations under U.S. section 482 IRC on research and development cost sharing 16. Feb. 1996 Final regulations under U.S. section 6662 (e) IRC (penalties) 17. March 1996 OECD Transfer Pricing Guidelines, Chapters VI and VII
Disclaimer and Copyright
This article treats the subjects covered in condensed form. It is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter and should not be relied on as a basis for business decisions. Specialist advice must be sought with respect to your individual circumstances. We in particular insist that the tax law and other sources on which the article is based be consulted in the original, whether or not such sources are named in the article. Please note as well that later versions of this article or other articles on related topics may have since appeared on this database or elsewhere and should also be searched for and consulted. While our articles are carefully reviewed, we can accept no responsibility in the event of any inaccuracy or omission. Please note the date of each article and that subsequent related developments are not necessarily reported on in later articles. Any claims nevertheless raised on the basis of this article are subject to German substantive law and, to the extent permissible thereunder, to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. This article is the intellectual property of KPMG Deutsche Treuhand-Gesellschaft AG (KPMG Germany). Distribution to third persons is prohibited without our express written consent in advance.