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United States: Appellate Court Reaffirms Decision that Conflict Minerals Rule Violates First Amendment

(Aug. 25, 2015) A panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit recently reaffirmed its 2014 judgment that a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rule requiring companies to publicly disclose that their products are not “conflict free” violates the First Amendment. (Nat’l Ass’n of Manufacturers v. SEC, No. 13-5252 (D.C. Cir. 2015) […]

Moldova: Tax Incentives for IT Parks

(Aug. 4, 2015) It was reported on August 3, 2015, that the Parliament of Moldova had approved draft legislation on tax incentives for information technology parks. (Vasile Foltea, Moldova: Tax Incentives Granted to IT Parks, TAX NEWS SERVICE (Aug.3, 2015), International Bureau of Fiscal Documentation online subscription database.) The draft law provides that the IT […]

China: Tax Incentives for Encouraged Industries in Western Regions

(Mar. 24, 2015) On March 10, 2015, China’s State Administration of Taxation (SAT) issued a clarification of corporate income tax issues in connection with the Catalog of Encouraged Industries in Western Regions. The SAT clarification applies retroactively from October 1, 2014, the date when the Catalog entered into force. (Shiqi Ma, Tax Incentives for Western […]

Brazil: Program Will Reduce Red-Tape in Opening or Closing a Company

(Mar. 2, 2015) On February 26, 2015, the federal government launched a program (Programa Bem Mais Simples Brasil) to reduce the government paperwork involved when opening or closing small- or medium-sized companies in Brazil. Under the new program the average time to go through the process of opening a business is expected to be reduced […]

Belgium: Class Action Lawsuits Introduced

(June 26, 2014) On March 28, 2014, the Federal Parliament of Belgium enacted a law adding a new section on “collective compensation action” to the Code of Economic Law. The new title on collective compensation action will be part of Book XVII, Special Jurisdictional Procedures of the Code. (Loi portant insertion d’un titre 2 “De […]

OHADA: Revised Uniform Act on Companies

(Mar. 14, 2014) The Council of Ministers of the Organization for Business Law Harmonization in Africa (Organisation pour l’Harmonisation en Afrique du Droit des Affaires, OHADA) adopted a “significantly revised” Uniform Act on Commercial Companies and Economic Interest Groups on January 30, 2014; the original Act was adopted on April 17, 1997. The new Act […]

Finland: Amendment of List of Countries Subject to Controlled Foreign Company Legislation

(Feb. 4, 2014) The Ministry of Finance (Valtiovarainministeriö) of Finland issued a decree on December 31, 2013, updating its list of countries that impose a corporate tax burden deemed to be significantly different from (less than three-fifths of) the tax imposed in Finland. The countries on the list, sometimes called the black or gray list, […]

Finland: Public Register Proposed for Tax Debts of Enterprises

(Dec. 23, 2013) The Finnish government presented draft legislation to Finland’s parliament, the Eduskunta, on December 5, 2013, concerning the establishment of a public register on tax debts of enterprises. (Laura Pakarinen, Finland: Government Proposes Public Tax Debt Register, TAX NEWS SERVICE (Dec. 6, 2013), International Bureau of Fiscal Documentation online subscription database.) Under law […]

Switzerland: Referendum Rejects Limits on Executive Pay

(Dec. 12, 2013) On November 24, 2012, the Swiss people voted on a popular initiative that would have amended the Swiss Constitution by adding a new article 110a to limit executive pay to 12 times the pay of the lowest-paid worker in the company. (Eidgenössische Volksinitiative ÆÂ?:12 – Für gerechte Löhne,’ Federal Chancellery website (Dec. […]

European Union: European Parliament Committee Approves Legislation Requiring Mineral and Oil Companies to Disclose Payments to Governments

(June 7, 2013) The Legal Affairs Committee of the European Parliament has endorsed draft legislation that requires companies involved in gas, oil, and mineral extraction as well as logging, to provide full disclosure of payments made to national governments. (Press Release, MEPS Back Deal Forcing Oil and Mineral Firms to Disclose Payments to Governments (May […]