In this pandemic year, four months have passed during which most of Asia has been working from home. The focus is almost exclusively on the virus. As in the previous edition of this bulletin, this edition covers tax news about measures taken by Asian countries in relation to COVID-19.
There were also other developments worth noting, such as Hong Kong’s new ship leasing regime (zero tax if the very reasonable conditions are met) and India’s recent Advance Ruling Authority decisions denying tax treaty protection under the Mauritian tax treaty in respect of an indirect transfer of shares of an Indian company.
There was quite some action in the digital space: India’s expansion of the Equalization Levy (which is a tax on digital transactions), Indonesia's introduction of a VAT liability on overseas tech companies selling digital goods or services to customers in Indonesia and both Thailand and the Philippines proposing a withholding tax or VAT on digital transactions.
Singapore, Hong Kong and Malaysia have expressed their respective views on whether the current travel restrictions has consequences for tax residency or permanent establishment risks. These are just some of the topics discussed in this edition of the Asia Tax Bulletin.