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International Taxation In An Era Of Digital Disruption: Analyzing The Current Debate, Itai Grinberg Oct 2018

International Taxation In An Era Of Digital Disruption: Analyzing The Current Debate, Itai Grinberg

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

The “taxation of the digital economy” is currently at the top of the global international tax policymaking agenda. A core claim some European governments are advancing is that user data or user participation in the digital economy justifies a gross tax on digital receipts, new profit attribution criteria, or a special formulary apportionment factor in a future formulary regime targeted specifically at the “digital economy.” Just a couple years ago the OECD undertook an evaluation of whether the digital economy can (or should) be “ring-fenced” as part of the BEPS project, and concluded that it neither can be nor should ...


The Digital Services Tax: A Conceptual Defense, Wei Cui Oct 2018

The Digital Services Tax: A Conceptual Defense, Wei Cui

All Faculty Publications

As 2018 nears its end, a digital service tax (DST) seems imminent in Europe, yet elaborations of the DST’s motivations have so far come primarily from the European Commission and the UK Treasury: academic and practitioner commentators remain largely skeptical. This paper offers a new conceptual defense of the DST that is independent of the existing government positions. I argue that a clear case can be made for the DST as a way of taxing location-specific rent earned by digital platforms. While the DST may also be partially motivated by other, potentially conflicting visions for reforming international taxation, such ...


Residence-Based Formulary Apportionment: (In-)Feasibility And Implications, Wei Cui Oct 2018

Residence-Based Formulary Apportionment: (In-)Feasibility And Implications, Wei Cui

All Faculty Publications

I examine one way of taxing international corporate income that has not previously been studied, “residence-based formulary apportionment” or RBFA. I first offer a new taxonomy of different ways of taxing corporate income by reference to individual shareholders, and distinguish what I call the “shareholder attribution” approach from integration, pass-through, and other approaches. I then argue that although traditional international legal norms had led international tax design to avoid taxing foreign corporations “unconnected” with the taxing jurisdiction (e.g. foreign corporations earning only foreign income), these legal norms have gone through substantial transformations in recent years. The exercise of jurisdiction ...