State aid law has an important role to play when combatting tax avoidance and harmful tax competition. The ideal goal is to secure fair tax competition and establish a level playing field between businesses. That is why, State aid as an EU regulatory instrument of competition, is one of the few provisions that covers direct tax by controlling the national tax law and tax decision making within the State aid framework. At the same time, this role is limited as the State aid regime is not originally designed as an instrument to handle of all tax benefits. In this context, this master’s thesis deals with the application of State aid law to tax rulings, focusing on the assessment of the selectivity criterion. Based on the in-depth investigations opened by The European Commission several tax authorities in the EU Member States have been forced to justify their tax rulings based on transfer pricing agreements – specifically advance pricing agreements (APAs) – agreed between multinational companies and Member States. The questions are whether the tax ruling by the Member States provides a selective advantage for some multinational companies regarding a lowering of the cooperate income tax. These investigations represent a critical milestone, when using tax rulings as a measure of State aid. Based on the different aspects of these on-going investigations of the tax rulings this master’s thesis seeks to analyse under which circumstances they are compatible with the EU State aid law. Furthermore it seeks to analyse how tax rulings may affect both the tax competition and the competition in general within the internal market.
|Educations||MSc in Commercial Law, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||76|