11.4. Tax Compliance: Tools and Scope

Thursday, May 20
12:30 - 13:30

Channel 3
BROADCAST
Live Stream

Track: 11. Antimonopoly, Tax and Customs Regulation
Discussion session

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The Russian Federal Tax Service is moving the focus of its supervision away from inspections of individual companies and towards the creation of a transparent tax environment in entire economic sectors. This has led to companies from several industries entering into special Charters providing for a disavowal of interaction with ‘troubled’ and ‘transit’ firms.

In 2021, the Federal Tax Service started expanding the list of entities engaged in this process, namely, in relation to those involved in the cleaning, maintenance and motor freight transportation industries. Major taxpayers purchasing the relevant services have already received proposals to participate in the ‘exoneration’ of these industries. It is suggested that they include in their agreements ‘tax clauses’ by having recourse to representations and indemnities. Where ‘breaks in the chain’ of supplies have been identified, a buyer has the right not to implement a VAT deduction for such transaction, whereas the buyer may recover from the supplier the property losses incurred as a result of such breaks.

However, will the implementation of these tax clauses in business practice lead to the tax burden of bad-faith companies being shifted onto major taxpayers and to the double imposition of tax?

The following issues will feature in the discussion:

  • whether it is permissible for the tax authorities to interfere with the structuring of civil law relationships and for the burden of preventing tax violations to be shifted onto the participants of business practice;
  • whether property losses/damages may be recovered from a counterparty by virtue of a notice from the tax authority that there has been a ‘break in the chain’; 
  • and the legal relevance of a taxpayer’s actions against the backdrop of the recommendations of the Federal Tax Service.

Moderator

Ksenia Litvinova

Partner, Pepeliaev Group

Biography

Ksenia specialises in tax law and advises major Russian and foreign companies on a broad range of issues relating to taxation. These include, among others: tax planning; transfer pricing; assessing tax risks and the potential of different business models in the construction, production, retail and other sectors; conducting due diligence of the actions and decisions of tax authorities; participating in tax litigation; and providing support in tax audits.

Ksenia has extensive experience of successfully handling various types of tax litigation, including transfer pricing among others, in the commercial courts of different federal circuits.

Ksenia has more than 20 years of professional experience, and she has an economics degree majoring in Finance and Credit. Ksenia is the author and co-author of numerous articles on tax law, and is an active speaker at seminars and conferences on various information sites. She has frequently been involved in preparing draft laws designed to improve tax legislation.

Ksenia is one of the leading Russian experts in tax law according to the major independent international directory The Best Lawyers. She has been marked out by World Tax & TP as a leading practitioner in the ‘Tax controversy’ and ‘Women in tax’ practice areas.

Speakers

Anton Ivanov

Academic Supervisor of the Faculty of Law – School Head of the School of Private Law, HSE University

Andrey Nikonov

Senior Partner, Pepeliaev Group

Biography

ndrey provides legal support in taxation projects related to entering into and implementing production sharing agreements, contracts between companies, mergers and acquisitions of companies with multinational corporations being involved, and in major investment projects.

Andrey has significant experience in providing advice and representing major Russian and foreign companies before courts with regard to the calculation and payment of taxes. The advice he provides is on a wide range of issues, not least those arising in the calculation and payment of profit tax, VAT and mineral extraction tax.

Andrey has been ranked by Pravo-300 in Tier 1 for tax consulting and tax disputes.

Andrey's major projects include, among others:

  • preparing an appeal to the Russia's Constitutional Court to have recognised as inconsistent with the Russian Constitution the requirement of the Russian Tax Code that a taxpayer should include in its tax base for VAT not only the cost of goods (works or services) sold, but also the amount of an insurance payout the taxpayer has received because the buyer has breached its obligation to pay for the goods (works or services);
  • successfully settling a multi-billion tax dispute involving a Russian subsidiary of an international carrier;
  • representing a major Russian bank before a court in a case concerning the taxation of bank loyalty programmes;
  • representing Gazprom OJSC and its subsidiaries in cases that involved challenging the results of field tax audits.

Vladimir Zaitsev

Head of the Tax Department, Siemens Goup of Companies

Biography

From 2009 to date – head of the tax department of the Siemens group of companies

From 2008 until 2009: financial controller at E.ON Russia Power LLC

From 1999 until 2008: worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers


* The Programme may be subject to change