We have gathered feedback from the tax authorities of various key countries to find out the specifics about their APA programs. Read the following Q&A interview on the topic of APAs in Turkey with their tax authority.
Q: What are, in your view, the main achievements of your APA program?
A: Signing an APA is a big deal. Those who do sign APAs will pave the way for other taxpayers.
Issues and challenges
Q: What are the main challenges facing your APA program?
A: APA’s are new for both the taxpayers and tax authorities, thus our main challenge is to acquire the skills (i.e. negotiation skills) to manage the process effectively.
Q: Are there particular substantive issues (for instance, marketing intangibles or buy-ins for cost sharing arrangements, etc.) that have been more difficult to deal with?
A: Usually the main thing questioned is “what or where is the benefit from cross-border charges?”
Q: Are there particular procedural issues (for instance, APAs involving more than two jurisdictions or APAs where prior years are under the mutual agreement procedure and these involve large proposed adjustments, etc.) that have been more difficult to deal with?
A: One can expect that involvement of even two jurisdictions creates issues and it is time consuming even if there is no multilateral application. In addition, an APA may put prior years under question and could also trigger customs inquiries.
Q: Are there any other issues that you would like to bring to the attention of taxpayers as potentially difficult?
A: There is not enough data to apply CUP unless there are internal comparables. "Secret comparables" is also an issue for APAs.
Trends and outlook
Q: Based on your experience, have you noticed certain trends in any of the following topics:
- Type of APA requested (unilateral vs. bilateral)
A: Total APA applications files have been 5. The 2 of them bilateral, but there is no bilateral signed. One of the unilateral has been rejected.
- Transfer Pricing Methodology (TPM) proposed
A: TNMM mostly.
A: Tax risk management and thus elimination of uncertainty because there is an increasing tendency to audit "cross-border” transactions.
A: There have not been enough applications so far to allow us to comment on trends.
Q: Looking to the future, what do you foresee for APAs?
A: Increasing demand for APAs due to long delays in MAP procedures. Hiring of new APA staff will help improve the time delay.