A number of questions arise in this connection. First of all, does this rule permit disclosing the information to the taxpayer himself The answer to this question depends on the statements of the national legislation. If in concordance with the national legislation the taxpayer is considered to be the person defining the tax, the answer will be “yes”. Under other circumstances the disclosing of the information to the taxpayer is prohibited, excluding the cases of complaint submission, when the information is to be made public, for instance during the court session. Second, the situation may arise, when according to the national legislation it is necessary to use some quantitative data (tax sum, value etc) defined for one of the taxes subject to the Convention for the purpose of another tax, to which the Convention does not apply. In such a situation, it is http://www.oecd.org/document/53/0,3343,en_2649_33747_33614197_1_1_1_1,00.html http://www.oecd.org/document/15/0,3343,en_2649_33747_41032207_1_1_1_37427,00.html evident that the national legislation should have the priority, however in case the quantitative data mentioned are then appealed during the actions made in connection with the tax that is not a subject of the Convention, there might be additional difficulties arising. It should be noted that in cases, when there is a statement on taxpayer’s notification on the information exchange, article 25 of the Model Convention on incomes and capital (reciprocal agreement procedure) might prevent it43.
The tax legislations of the majority of countries in the corresponding agreements have statements that envisage (1) use of information received from other countries on the basis of international agreements, and (2) use of the data on one tax for the calculation of other taxes.
Paragraph Paragraph 2 article 26 contains three limitations for the responsibility for the information exchange in concordance with the statements of the article mentioned. The Negotiating state is not obliged to:
- take measures contradicting the legislation or the administrative practice of this or the other Negotiating State;
- give information received not in concordance with the national legislation or administrative practice of this or the other Negotiating State.;
- submit information, disclosing any trade, business, industrial, commercial or professional secrets, or information, whose disclosing would contradict the government policy r the major government interests.
There is a question concerning paragraph 2, whether the state is obliged to use its authority to get the information in concordance to its own legislation for the benefit of the other Negotiating state even in case when the state is not interested in such information. In the Comments to the OECD Model Convention it is clearly stated that the Negotiating state should use all the authority it possesses to get the information under these circumstances.
Thus, according to this short example of the OECD Model Convention analysis it can be assumed that the norm, which is the basis for this model, is complicated and requires for the state implementing it to have some additional explanations and comments.
Let us consider two examples of the corresponding articles of the Russian bilateral conventions, adopted on the basis of article 26.
Example 1 Let us examine article 26 of the Convention on avoiding double taxation and prevention of evasion from taxes between the Russian Federation and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland of 15 February 1994.
When comparing it with the original version of article 26 there are two discrepancies between this and the Model Convention can be noticed.
In the Russian variant of the first statement in paragraph 1 there are word added “for instance, concerning prevention of tax evasion and simplification of the law enforcement aimed against the legal tax evasion”.
These words could be included in the Agreement because of only one reason – one of the parties (the Great Britain, most likely) was interested for the information exchange article to be used only for two purposes mentioned – evasion from taxes legally and illegally. The presence of such text in the article of information exchange as well as references to tax evasion in the title of the Convention allow stressing the fact that such agreements on avoiding of double taxation might also be used to prevent tax evasion in legal and illegal ways.
The second difference is that the reference for article 1 of the Convention is lacking. This difference is, however, not very important because the reference is given only for the purposes of specification and its absence does not limit the application of the article in any way.
Example 2 Articles 26 and 27of the Agreement between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Cyprus on avoiding of double taxation concerning the taxes on incomes and capital, signed on 5 December 1998.
The text of article 26 of this agreement repeats the text of article 26 of the OECD Model Convention nearly word by word. The fact that there are no words mentioned above included in the Convention concluded between the Russian Federation and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland may signify that the Government of the Cyprus does not pay special attention to the counteraction to the tax evasion and legal tax minimization.
Article 25, “If any person holds that the action of one or the both Negotiating States lead or will lead to the levy of this person with the tax not in concordance with the present Convention, this person can, irrespective of sanctions, envisaged by the national legislation of the State mentioned, initiate legal proceedings in the authorized body of the Negotiating State, in which he is a resident, and if the case is subject to the statements of paragraph 1 article 24, in the authorized body of the Negotiating State, for which he is a national person”.
*** It seems that the statements on the information exchange in the Russian agreements on avoiding of double taxation do not pay enough attention to the use of such information to prevent tax evasion and legal ways to avoid taxation.
Article 26 of the Convention on avoiding of double taxation signed by the governments of the Russian Federation and the Great Britain is a good example of how the stress can be placed on these issues.
Besides, it is important for the Russian Federation to pay special attention for the preparation of agreements with the counties having favorable taxation regime (so-called countries of the “tax paradise”). The alternative for the conclusion of the full-scale agreement on avoiding double taxation may be the agreement regulating only the issues of information exchange.
For instance, the Russian Federation could sign the joint convention of the OECD and the Council of Europe on rendering reciprocal assistance concerning taxation issues Countries that are the member of the Council of Europe and countries that are OECD member and signed the Convention mentioned can coordinate the following ways of assistance by the taxation bodies within the framework of the Convention:
a) information exchange, including conduction of simultaneous tax inspections and participation in the inspection conducted in other countries;
b) assistance during tax levy, including measures, guaranteeing tax arrears collecting;
c) documents submission.
Since the Russian Federation is a member of the Council of Europe, tax bodies of the Russian Federation have the opportunity to apply this Convention.
Budget Address 2008 and Plans for Military Reform: Analysis of Consistency V. Tsymbal Results of comparative analysis of Budget address, in which on behalf of the President of the Russian Federation, main guiding lines of budget policy for 2009-2011 and further prospect are given, with the information on achieved results, conclusions and plans of the military reform in the Russian Federation are presented. Partial inconsistencies and the need for their coordination are demonstrated.
In contrast to the tradition of the previous years the RF President started the series of his addresses to the Federal Assembly and other government bodies not with the one on general policies but with the Budget address44.
It formally contains all the sections corresponding to conceptual documents – making conclusions on budgetary policy, estimation of the situation, setting goals and objectives, and, finally, making priorities in their solution. In our opinion, these are the sections of address to which all the information on achievements and plans of the new stage of the military reform should be projected.
Let us start with the analysis of the results, in particular with the statements of the fact that Russia has “considerably advanced” along the way of “increasing efficiency and transparency of public finances management”. It should be noted that this was stated in connection with strategic goals of RF socio- and economic development “unconditionally taking into account efficiency and effectiveness of budget expenses”.
This is perhaps true for some parts and articles of budget expenses. However as to military expenses these statements are not quite correct.
The level of military expenses secrecy, in the opinion of experts, has considerably increased over the recent years, and the level of expenses specification in papers that were promulgated – has decreased45. It is difficult to compare both military expenses of Russia itself by year to year dynamics and their level as compared with other countries, since classification of RF military expenses is reconsidered each year and a considerable and at the same time altering part of expenses is withdrawn from the parts of defense and law enforcement and included in other parts of the federal budget. According to published unbiased analysis, if one Budget Address of the President of the Russian Federation to the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation:
Zatsepin V. Military expenses of the federal budget in 2008 // Economic and Politic Situation in Russia – 2008 – February – P. 50-55 <Зацепин В. Военные расходы федерального бюджета в 2008 году // Экономикополитическая ситуация в России. – 2008. – Февраль. – С. 50–55>: http://www.iet.ru/files/text/trends/02-08.pdf.
recalculates RF military expenses Making them meet UN and NATO standards (it is also authorized since the RF is an official partner of the latter organization), the result will be the following: not only does the share of total RF expenses for defense exceed the level of 2.8%, but also that of 4% of the GDP. NATO experts are aware of it. Then who are we to mislead The level of military expenses transparency by separate sections is not much higher. If one compares the published expenses for federal target program (FTP) of transfer to new system of military organization recruiting with the expenses that are open for analysis during conduction of Pskov experiment in 2003, the concealment of expenses specification from the interested public will be evident. In 2003 independent experts established the guilt of the experiment’s organizers in the fact that, for instance, expenses for research and development work accompanying the beginning of the period and staying in Moscow were more than thrice as much as the sum allotted for the admittedly main thing in Pskov – for material stimulation of contract soldiers. That is why people refused to sign contracts or, understanding the situation, rushed to cancel them. Taking this into account, later the Ministry for Defense planned the FTP fulfillment on its own, managed its execution, controlled all the processes, not permitting citizens and society to participate. The result was uncontrolled spending of budget funds that turned out to be ineffective. This is testified not only by official indices of completed FTP46, but also by the indices of military efficiency47.
A separate part of the Budget Address deals with the problems of “budget allotments based on results mechanism” introduction in the Russian Federation. The FTP mentioned itself was fulfilled in concordance with these mechanisms. However since fulfillment of this and a number of other programs was upset and consequently somebody was to answer for this, the authors of the address chose to avoid uncomfortable situation. According to the document text, it was the Government of the Russian Federation that was responsible for FTP upset and underfulfillment of other programs which “did not establish the procedure for formation, realization and estimation of long-term target program efficiency in due time”.
This is not however the case. The authors of the address must have been aware of such a document as “Procedure for elaboration and fulfillment of federal target programs and intergovernmental target programs, in whose execution the Russian Federation takes part”. This procedure was approved by the Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation on 26 June 1995 No 594, which after 16 specifications, is still in effect! It contains if not everything then at least much of that connected with long-term programs. The responsibility for programs fulfillment quality is also established.
At the moment however it is attempted to picture the situation as if not the authorities responsible for FTP fulfillment had deranged this program fulfillment but “we had pressed it”! This is testified by the statement by A. Kanshin, the chairman of the committee for war veterans, military personnel and member of their families affairs of the RF Civil Society Chamber, who regards a rapid transition for the army on the contract basis a mistake, “The personnel we recruited fro our military forces cannot be allowed on sentry service because of low level of school preparation, low level of military registration and enlistment offices”48. As to the word “rapid”, it should be remembered that officially, the transition for voluntary recruiting to the army started with the Decree of the Government of the Russian Federation on 30 November 1992. More than years went by. No modern state acted so slowly. So, not only is the sense of FTP fulfillment perverted, which has earlier been observed, but also the results of such a “fulfillment” are.
Материалы этого сайта размещены для ознакомления, все права принадлежат их авторам.
Если Вы не согласны с тем, что Ваш материал размещён на этом сайте, пожалуйста, напишите нам, мы в течении 1-2 рабочих дней удалим его.