Op-Ed Highlights Some of Manufacturers’ Concerns with BEPS

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal op-ed by Douglas Holtz-Eakin at American Action Forum raises some of the same concerns we’ve been hearing from our members about the BEPS recommendations from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development aimed at curbing tax avoidance and international profit shifting.
 As Holtz-Eakin notes, the rules go too far and could place onerous new compliance burdens on companies and risk exposing companies’ sensitive and proprietary business information. In particular, the proposed ‘master file’ requirement, could force U.S. companies to hand over a comprehensive business roadmap of their international operations to foreign tax authorities, with no confidentiality protections in place.

For U.S. manufacturers, and especially private enterprises, the master file provision represents a real threat, as sensitive company information could leak out to rival companies, making it more difficult for American businesses to compete internationally.

As Mr. Holtz-Eakin notes in the article “Nothing could be more valuable to a U.S. company’s competitors than the information in the master file. But the master file isn’t subject to any confidentiality safeguards beyond those a foreign government decides to provide. A foreign government could hand the information over to any competitor or use it to develop a new one. And the file could be hacked.”

Because of this threat to one of the most diverse and important industries in the U.S., the NAM is working diligently to protect American businesses from the harmful effects of provisions in the BEPS project, like the master file requirement. We urge Congress and the U.S. Treasury Department to safeguard the manufacturing industry and to support initiatives that will protect the U.S. manufacturing industry from the harmful effects of certain provisions in the BEPS project.

Dorothy Coleman

Dorothy Coleman

Dorothy Coleman is vice president of tax and domestic economic policy at the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). Ms. Coleman is responsible for providing NAM members with important information related to tax issues and representing the NAM’s position to Congress, the Administration and the media. An NAM spokesperson for tax policy issues, she coordinates membership coalitions; prepares testimony, reports and analyses; and responds to media inquiries. Before taking over as vice president of the tax policy department, she served as director of tax policy from April 1998 to April 2000.
Dorothy Coleman

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