Social Consideration or Tax Evasion? A Study of Shared Economies and Taxwelfare

Trine Elling

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

This thesis focusses on shared economies in a modern society, namely the taxation of incomes from such activities and the difficulties involved with defining the principles of taxation, which are to be applied to the area. It is clear that shared economies already represent an enormous financial value with virtually unlimited possibilities of expanding in both size and areas. It is even estimated, that it may in some areas – including housing and transportation – expand to a financial size equal to the established industries. The area is however plagued by limited and insufficient tax reports of income from shared economies, which is at least partly due to limited information regarding the taxation of such earnings. A central focus of the thesis is to present the reader with such information and thus allowing the reader to correctly asses his or her financial status and correctly calculate income and deductions. It however quickly becomes clear that even selecting or estimating the correct taxation grouping is a challenge, since it relies on an individual assessment of the activities and intensity of the practitioner, for which there are no reliable information or guidelines available. I furthermore present a case based study in which I evaluate the Danish activates of an international shared economy service ‘Airbnb’ in order to evaluate a view held in both public and by politicians that Airbnb should pay taxes in Denmark from their activities here. Based on this study I conclude, that the activities of Airbnb do not lead to them having a permanent establishment in Denmark or any other activities that within current international taxation agreements could provide groundings for taxation in Denmark. The only realistic possibility of a change to this state of affairs are the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting project, which are a series of action plans put forward by OECD, that among others involves a suggested change of the principles of transfer pricing so that value generated at an earlier step of the ‘value chain’ to a higher degree should also be taxed in the country in which the value is generated.

EducationsMSc in Auditing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageDanish
Publication date2016
Number of pages84