Written by: Lorraine White | Global Head of Securities Tax and Client Solutions, BNY Mellon Asset Servicing
Withholding taxes are a significant barrier to cross-border investing. The European Commission has recently consulted on a code of conduct designed to reduce costs and simplify procedures for cross-border investors claiming withholding taxes within the European Union.
To support our clients in navigating these new guidelines, BNY Mellon hosted events in Amsterdam and Brussels to review the initiatives underway. To summarise, the code of conduct includes measures to create digital-friendly forms for applying for withholding tax relief. This ensures reliable and effective timeframes for granting relief, reduces complexity for smaller investors, and provides a single point of contact within Member State tax administrations.
BNY Mellon is preparing for this change and looking to technology solutions to meet new tax authority demands. Clients recognize that our technology is central to our strategy, and equally aware that only so much is possible until the tax authorities implement workable solutions.
BNY Mellon welcomes the discussions but believes that, in order for the changes to be successful, they must not add further complexity or cost for investors, tax authorities or operators of tax relief procedures. Moreover, unless the key areas on standardisation and the need for wider industry engagement are addressed, the overarching objectives may not be achieved.
We stand ready to work with the European Commission and governments to help overcome the practical barriers our clients face with the goal that, together, we can implement solutions that bring about simplification and procedural harmonisation
Global Head of Securities Tax Research & Client Tax Solutions, Tax & Regulatory
Lorraine is Director, Global Head of Securities Tax Research & Client Tax Solutions, Tax & Regulatory, at BNY Mellon. She and her team provides custody tax technical support to their Investment Servicing groups and clients. She is responsible for the withholding, capital gains and transaction tax technical analysis in all countries in which BNY Mellon provides a custody service together with the formal communication of change to all impacted tax functions and BNY Mellon clients.