Full text: Taxation of foundations in Europe

2 In many cases, the first argument cannot be completely refuted. However, to achieve this objective, the legislator only needs to create the appropriate civil law framework within the Private Foundation Act; there is no need for particular fiscal advantages. The most important tax advantage enjoyed by private foundations is undoubtedly the tax ex- emption or reduced taxation of capital gains on the disposal of shareholdings. For the second argument to work, the same tax advantages would need to exist in other countries which are comparable to Austria in terms of legal security and political and monetary stability. The aim of this survey is to find out whether similar rules exist in other EU member states, Switzer- land and Liechtenstein. After the empirical part of the survey, we will examine to what extent the fiscal disadvantages resulting from the non-taxation of capital gains on the disposal of shareholdings are compensated for by the beneficial effects, if any, on the national economy. For an overall assessment, the probability that asset management companies move abroad is of course significant, too. If it turns out that there is only a low probability that asset man- agement companies move abroad (after all, other comparable countries are no lands of milk and honey either) and that the advantages for the Austrian economy are less significant than the tax advantages granted, Austria would have to reconsider this instrument as a whole. For it is obvious that the “bad boy� image in fiscal matters that Austria increasingly enjoys in the European Union, an image enforced by the strict bank secrecy vis-?-vis tax authorities and the abolition of nearly all wealth taxes (while labour remains heavily taxed), does not pay in the long term. In particular the current economic crisis that will require a huge deployment of public funds (which, at the end of the day, will need to be financed by tax money) does not permit us to continue to pursue a beggar-my-neighbour policy, but obliges us to find new and common taxation standards in the EU.

Note to user

Dear user,

In response to current developments in the web technology used by the Goobi viewer, the software no longer supports your browser.

Please use one of the following browsers to display this page correctly.

Thank you.