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European State Aid and Tax Rulings

Liza Lovdahl Gormsen, Director of the Competition Law Forum and Senior Research Fellow in Competition Law, British Institute of International and Comparative Law and Senior Lecturer in Law, University of Manchester, UK
This book investigates whether the European Commission (EC) has the mandate to legislate on direct taxation in sovereign states and ultimately questions whether the EC’s enforcement action in recent tax ruling cases, in the area of state aid, respects the rule of law.
Extent: 200 pp
Hardback Price: $110.00 Web: $99.00
Publication Date: 2019
ISBN: 978 1 78897 208 6
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  • Law - Academic
  • Competition and Antitrust Law
  • Corporate Law and Governance
  • European Law
  • Tax Law and Fiscal Policy
This book investigates whether the European Commission (EC) has the mandate to legislate on direct taxation in sovereign states and ultimately questions whether the EC’s enforcement action in recent tax ruling cases, in the area of State aid, respects the rule of law.

Liza Lovdahl Gormsen explores whether the EC’s recent rulings in relation to Member States’ advanced pricing arrangements reflect a genuine problem of illegal State aid or whether the EC is attempting to use State aid rules to harmonise national tax systems. The author examines this issue through relevant case law, comparing the EC’s actions with OECD guidance and US practices, assessing what is legitimate in terms of the EC’s actions and competences. Through the lens of State aid and tax rulings, the author addresses the wider constitutional question of how to reconcile national interests with the move towards European harmonisation; does the answer lie in more integration, or less?

This book will be of great interest to academics researching the relationship between the EC and Member States in regards to taxation, State aid and authority over direct taxation. Practising lawyers working in the field of State aid and tax will also find this to be a useful resource as it clearly outlines relevant case law and interprets the resulting decisions.
‘A powerful critique of the European Commission’s tax State aid investigations. The book is particularly valuable for tax lawyers, by setting the tax State aid cases in the broader context of the Commission’s gradual push towards “creeping competences”.’
– Dominic Robertson, Slaughter and May, UK

‘EU State aid law, formerly of interest mostly to competition lawyers, has, in the last few years, intruded into the world of international taxation, in particular by its effects on multinational group companies through a series of high-profile investigations by the European Commission. In a detailed, forensic analysis, Dr Liza Lovdahl Gormsen has produced an excellent critical examination of this interaction of State aid and taxation. This book is highly recommended, in particular for tax specialists seeking to understand this fast-developing subject.’
– Conor Quigley QC, Serle Court, London, UK
Contents: Foreword 1. Introduction 2. State Aid Decisions and Open Formal Investigations Concerning the Tax Ruling Practices of Member States 3. Arm’s Length Principle 4. Recovery, Legitimate Expectations and Legal Certainty 5. EU Competences 6. International Practices and the OECD 7. The Way Forward Index