U.K. Government revises Finance Bill 2012 to favor UK Shipowning Companies

(Press Release)
Monday, April 30, 2012

International accountant and shipping adviser Moore Stephens has welcomed the UK government’s decision to minimize the effect of new rules in Finance Bill 2012 which resulted in a potentially serious trap for existing UK shipowners entering tonnage tax.
Finance Bill 2012 originally extended some anti-avoidance rules relating to leasing companies, so that they applied to existing UK shipowning companies chartering out ships which enter UK tonnage tax. But the rules have now been changed following representations made by Moore Stephens and by other shipping industry representatives.
Moore Stephens tax partner Sue Bill says, “The rules apply where, very broadly, at least half the value of the company’s plant and machinery is chartered out or at least half its income in the previous twelve months is from the chartering out of plant and machinery, including ships, even where the chartering is to another group company.
“As originally drafted, the proposed new rules could have applied where a UK shipowning company in a tonnage tax group entered tonnage tax because it started to carry on activities which qualified for tonnage tax, for example because it owned a vessel which ceased to be chartered out on a long-term bareboat charter, or a vessel that started to be used ‘at sea’, or because the company’s ships started to be strategically and commercially managed in the UK. The rules also applied in some circumstances where a company was acquired by a UK tonnage tax group.
“Broadly speaking, if the rules apply, the company will be taxed on an amount equal to the excess of the net book value of its assets over their tax written-down value. It may be possible to reduce this taxable income using tax losses and/or capital allowances. Clearly, this could result in a very large tax liability. Once the company has gone into tonnage tax, the normal transitional rules will apply whereby a balancing charge can arise if any vessels held on entry into tonnage tax are sold within seven years. This could mean there is effectively a double charge to tax.
“The rules have now been amended so that they apply only where there is a change in ownership of the company chartering out plant and machinery. They will still apply where a company leasing out plant and machinery becomes a member of a UK tonnage tax group, whether or not the company goes into tonnage tax at the same time. A company will become a member of a UK tonnage tax group if, broadly speaking, it comes under common control with companies in a UK tonnage tax group."
Although the effect of the new rules has been significantly reduced, care will need to be taken where a company comes under common control with companies in a UK tonnage tax group.
Sue Bill concludes, “It was unfortunate that the Finance Bill 2012 originally introduced legislation which posed a potentially serious threat for some UK shipowners going into tonnage tax. The government has however listened to representations and acted quickly to minimize the effect of the proposed new rules. This seems to be a sign of the UK government’s commitment to ensuring as far as possible the stability of the UK tonnage tax regime.”
 

Maritime Reporter September 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Finance

UASC Targets Expansion to Beat Container Market Blues

UASC expects to reach volume of 2.35 mln TEU in 2014 Global carriers still struggling with weak conditions United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) is on a major expansion drive,

Ecoships Claims 15% Ship Efficiency Gain

Ecoships introduced a customized version of the Six Sigma DMAIC approach to process and performance evaluation in order to optimize the energy-efficiency of the vessels under its management.

Singapore Bunker Meter Mandate Targets 'Frothy Fuel'

Singapore, the world's biggest bunkering port, plans to end the so-called "cappucino effect" in ship fuelling through new meters designed to stop suppliers from short-changing customers,

News

UASC Targets Expansion to Beat Container Market Blues

UASC expects to reach volume of 2.35 mln TEU in 2014 Global carriers still struggling with weak conditions United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) is on a major expansion drive,

Ecoships Claims 15% Ship Efficiency Gain

Ecoships introduced a customized version of the Six Sigma DMAIC approach to process and performance evaluation in order to optimize the energy-efficiency of the vessels under its management.

Oversupply, Ebola Fears Drive Oil Below $86

* Middle East supply remains strong * Equities fall on confirmed case of Ebola in New York * Economists see gloomy 2015 for China, euro zone - Reuters

Government Update

Gazprom to Counter Negative Global Market Trends

The Gazprom Board of Directors took note of the information on the Company's financial strategy under the conditions of negative trends in the global financial

Sea Dispute Sparks China Diplomat to Vietnam Visit

China's top diplomat to visit Vietnam again amid sea dispute   China's top diplomat will visit Vietnam next week, China said on Friday, five months after he last

A History of U.S. Oil Export Controls

On Oct. 20, 1973, King Faisal of Saudi Arabia imposed a total embargo on oil shipments to the United States among other countries in response to their support for Israel during the Arab-Israeli war.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Standards Navigation Pipelines Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1875 sec (5 req/sec)