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The Cyprus Parliament on 19 June 2020 has voted the Cyprus transposition of the European Union (EU) Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive (ATAD) for Exit taxation and Hybrid mismatch rules, which essentially completes Cyprus’ transposition of the EU ATADs i.e. ATAD I and II that were adopted by the EU in 2016 and 2017 respectively.

The new law mainly addresses Exit Taxation with the sole purpose to prevent companies from avoiding tax in the event of re-location of assets.

Our Views

While the EU Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive aims to ensure that member states take a coordinated stance against tax avoidance, it is worth to note that those targeted are Companies operating across international borders. In view of this, most of Cyprus firms have the activity of a holding company, which are tax exempt in Cyprus and with limited transactions, therefore the impact may not be that large in terms of exit taxation. We believe that the new law shall affect Companies in structures with taxable assets (not tax exempt), transferred in other jurisdictions.

By implementing these Exit Taxation rules, the EU has weakened and/or diluted the fundamental right of Freedom of Movement of Capital along with severe penalties and repercussions to businesses and corporations that relocate their funds and/or businesses. In addition, taxing the loss of tax income for a future period is in direct conflict with the basic tax principle and regulations on tax profits.

In that context, we advise all corporates and multinationals which are holding structures in the EU, doing business with the EU, or moving their tax residence, to get in touch with our Tax Team for an expert advice as per these changes in consideration of future transactions or restructuring.

For further information please contact Constantinos Pavlou, Advocate – Legal Consultant, at constantinos.pavlou@cypress.com.cy

Eurofast is a regional business advisory organisation employing local advisors in over 22 cities in South East Europe & Middle East (SEEME). The Organisation is uniquely positioned as one stop shop for investors and companies looking for professional services in South East Europe & Middle East.

Constantinos Pavlou
Advocate – Legal Consultant
constantinos.pavlou@cypress.com.cy

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