Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Service Permanent Establishment-Changing Landscape?

Old age English proverb "Necessity is the mother of all inventions" is very apt owing to which last century has witnessed tremendous advancement in the field of technology. Technology has enormously impacted the way businesses function or the manner in which corporate transactions are structured.

Today physical presence of personnel is not necessary in order to conduct business in another state. Jobs can be performed over emails, telephones, mobiles, video conferencing etc. Whether, conducting business using technology, which to a large extent eliminates the requirement of physical presence 'on-site (client place)', constitute as the presence of the multinational enterprise in the source state so as to constitute its permanent establishment ('PE') in the source state1?

This question has been answered in negative (i.e. against the taxpayer) by Hon'ble Bangalore Tribunal in a recent judgment in the case of ABB FZ-LLC v. Dy. CIT (International Taxation), Circle-1(1), and Bengaluru.

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