The Rising Popularity of Advance Rulings in India
India has earned the dubious distinction of being the country adding the most teeth to its tax regime in the previous year, according to a recent Forbes study. This has been compounded by the aggressive approach adopted by the revenue authorities in the recent past, leading to uncertainty for foreign investors when it comes to tax implications on their transactions in India. The Authority for Advance Rulings (AAR) has emerged as a significant player contributing to international tax jurisprudence, not just in India, but also internationally.
Over the last few years, AAR rulings have come a long way in removing uncertainty and imbalance in the tax administration. The AAR has helped instill confidence in foreign investors who, after obtaining a ruling, get a true picture of their tax liability in India, and can then plan their business affairs before entering India. With more than 70,000 cases pending before the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, the AAR has emerged as a fast and efficient alternative as it avoids a long drawn expensive litigation process.
We had recently written a detailed article analyzing the rise in popularity of the Advance Ruling mechanism in India together with relevant statistics evidencing this trend, in Tax Notes International (July 20, 2009). The same can be accessed from the link provided below.