Due to an EU directive adopted last year, certain rules on corporate tax are changing with effect from 2019 – including the provisions on interest deduction due to “thin capitalisation.” Although the purpose of the directive was to defeat tax avoidance and tighten up the tax regulations, the new rules on interest deduction are actually becoming more of a blessing than a curse for businesses in Hungary.
While Hungary has long been a preferred place in international tax planning, with a flat 9% corporate tax rate recently introduced, the country has arrived to the forefront of the competition. Adding also the absence of withholding taxes, the participation exemption both on portfolio holdings and intellectual properties, coupled with all benefits of an EU–compliant tax legislation, Hungary is destined to become a popular place for tax experts.
Back in the day, buyers and sellers were better off selling shares in a company with possession of the property, rather than the property itself; but over the years, legislators have chipped away steadily at the benefits of acquiring property through a company purchase. Contrary to common belief, however, buying real estate through a company can still bring a number of tax advantages; and the range of these is set to expand from January of next year.
As it is commonly known, the calculation of the corporate tax liability of Hungarian enterprises is based on the accounting figures. But a nasty surprise could lie in store for those who believe that they can apply the principles of accounting recognition fully in the course of calculating corporate tax.
The law is constantly in flux. While many people may find this intimidating, for us it’s precisely what makes it so exciting. We’d like to share this attitude with businesspeople and managers, and with those who just have an interest in business law, in the form of a regularly updated blog that discusses the latest tax law and commercial law issues in an accessible style. Feel free to send your questions and suggestions for topics you’d like us to cover to firstname.lastname@example.org.