1.png自从2016年10月国家税务总局发布《非居民金融账户涉税信息尽职调查管理办法(征求意见稿)》 以来,有关经合组织(OECD)《统一报告标准》(CRS)的讨论就成为中国财富管理市场的热点话题,媒体报道、专家解读,可谓是沸沸扬扬。In October 2016, the State Administration of Taxation released the draft version of the Measures for the Administration of Due Diligence on Tax Information of Non-resident Financial Accounts and asked for public comments. It was an effort to conform to the requirements of the CRS.CRS是经济全球化的必然产物,其实质属于跨国之间的税收情报交换制度,即通过跨国之间的金融账户涉税信息自动交换,打击纳税人通过在别国藏匿资产和收入以逃避本国税收的行为。笔者结合自身在欧洲实际从事国际税收信息交换的相关执业经验,归纳总结了对CRS下“全球反避税”的十大常见误区。The CRS is an outgrowth of economic globalization. It facilitates the automatic exchange of tax-related information from financial accounts across borders in an effort to combat tax evasion. In the following article, the author relies on the European experience of international tax data exchanges to examine 10 areas of frequent misunderstandings of the CRS framework and the worldwide effort to prevent tax evasion.误区一:CRS等同于全球征税所谓全球征税(Worldwide Taxation),是指纳税人如果是某国的税收居民,则其在全球的收入都应当在该国申报和缴纳所得税。纳税人担负的这种全球纳税义务也称“全面纳税义务”或者“无限纳税义务”。全球征税本质上是一个所得税范畴的概念。而CRS实施的目的就是通过跨国之间的金融账户涉税信息的自动交换,实现一国纳税人在海外所持有账户的“透明化”,以便该国税务机关能准确把握其税收居民在海外的收入是否在本国依法履行了纳税义务。但是,这并不等于一国纳税人在海外的资产都要被全球征税。因为从所得税尤其是个人所得税的角度看,其征税对象是该个人的所得或者收入,而并非纳税人所拥有的资产本身。如果只是持有资产,但并没有所得,自然也不会存在所得税上的全球征税问题。Misunderstanding 1: The CRS is Global TaxationGlobal taxation means that a taxpayer's worldwide income should be declared in the country where he or she resides. This worldwide tax liability is also described as full or unlimited tax liability. Worldwide taxation refers to income tax, and the CRS is designed to increase the transparency of overseas accounts held by a country’s taxpayers through cross-border automatic exchanges of tax-related information on financial accounts. This is to allow tax authorities to accurately apply taxes on overseas income in accordance with the law of the land. However, a taxpayer’s assets held overseas are not the objective of the CRS guidelines. The objective is to assess the taxable income, and assets that do not produce income should not trigger worldwide taxation.案例王先生是中国税收居民,其在瑞士某银行持有存款账户。假设2019年12月31日该账户的余额为150万美元,2019年该存款产生利息收入4万美元,那么按照CRS下的账户信息交换规则,王先生的存款账户信息会被申报和交换给中国税务机关。但是,这并不代表这150万美元存款就要被中国税务机关按照个人所得税法的规定征收所得税。因为从所得税的角度,税务机关所关心的是该150万美元现金存款所产生的应税收入(即利息收入4万美元)是否向中国主管税务机关进行了申报和纳税,根据财政部、国家税务总局《关于储蓄存款利息所得有关个人所得税政策的通知》(财税〔2008〕132号)的规定,个人取得的储蓄存款利息所得免征个人所得税。但是该文件并未明确从境外取得的储蓄存款利息收入是否可以同等享受免税。Case StudyIn the following case, an individual we will call Mr. Wang is a tax resident in China who has deposits in a Swiss bank. Assuming his bank account balance is US$1.5 million when the standard takes effect and it generates interest income of US$40,000 in the same tax year. Under the CRS information exchange rules, Mr. Wang’s account information would be declared and exchanged with China's tax authorities. However, this does not mean that the US$1.5 million would be subject to income tax levied by Chinese tax authorities. Tax authorities would be concerned with ensuring the taxable income of US$40,000 generated from the US$1.5 million is in fact taxed in China.According to requirements of the Notice on Income Individual Income Tax Policy on Savings Deposit Interest (issued by the Ministry of Finance and the State Administration of Taxation in 2008, Tax Document No.132), interest income on individual savings deposits are exempt from individual income tax. However, the document does not specify whether interest income on offshore savings deposits are entitled to the same tax treatment.误区二:企业账户余额小于25万美元都不会被申报对于企业账户或者机构账户来说,金融机构应当按照存量机构账户和新增机构账户来分别进行尽职调查。而“存量”和“新增”的划分时间节点,通常是金融机构所在国家开始执行CRS的日期。对于存量机构账户来说,如果其在该时间节点的账户余额或价值小于25万美元,那么金融机构可以选择豁免对其进行尽职调查和申报,但是需要对其进行持续监控;如果该账户的余额或价值在其后的申报期末超过25万美元,那么该金融机构需要对其进行尽职调查,识别其是否属于需要申报的账户。Misunderstanding 2: Corporate Account Balances of Less than US$250,000For business or institutional accounts, financial institutions should conduct due diligence inspections on existing balances and the extent of increases in funds in those accounts. This requirement starts from the time when the country where the financial institutions are based begins to implement the CRS provisions. A financial institution may choose to exempt itself from due diligence and filing requirements if the balance in the account is less than US$250,000. If the account balance exceeds US$250,000, the financial institution needs to conduct due diligence and determine whether it is an account that requires a declaration.对于账户持有人来说,其是否可以享受25万美元的豁免门槛规定,首先要考虑金融机构所在国家的法规是否有该豁免门槛的规定;其次,由于该豁免门槛并非强制性规定,金融机构可以根据其实际需要来决定是否适用该25万美元的门槛(参见经合组织《统一报告标准实施手册》〔CRS Implementation Handbook〕第14页第9项规定)。在实践中,一些金融机构为了避免对豁免门槛下的账户进行持续监控带来的合规麻烦,可能会考虑不适用该25万美元的门槛,而选择将所有的存量机构账户进行尽职调查和信息申报。Whether account holders can enjoy the US$250,000 cutoff depends on whether there are corresponding tax exemptions in the financial institution's home country. Moreover, the exemption threshold is not mandatory, and the financial institutions can decide to apply the US$250,000 threshold according to the actual situation. In practice, some financial institutions may consider not applying this threshold and instead conduct due diligence on all deposits in order to avoid regulatory complications.误区三:个人账户余额100万美元以上的才会被尽职调查和申报在CRS下,对于个人持有的账户,不论是新增账户还是存量账户,也不论账户余额是多少(包括余额为0或负数的情形),均需要进行尽职调查,并没有规定100万美元以上的账户才需要申报。Misunderstanding 3: Individual Accounts of Less than US$1 MillionUnder the CRS, due diligence is required for individual accounts, whether new or existing, and regardless of the balance, including zero or negative balances. There are no provisions for excluding accounts of less than US$1 million.对于具有申报义务的金融机构来说,通常其管理的存量个人账户数量庞大,强制要求金融机构采取统一的标准进行账户的尽职调查,合规成本较大。鉴此,CRS规定以100万美元为界点,将个人持有的存量账户区分为高价值个人账户和低价值个人账户,而且分别适用不同的尽职调查程序。对于存量低价值个人账户,金融机构可以选择适用相对简化的尽职调查程序(例如适用“居住地址测试”等),以减轻金融机构的合规负担。同时,对于存量低价值个人账户的尽职调查时限通常要比高价值个人账户晚一年,让金融机构有更多的时间去完成存量低价值个人账户的合规义务。Financial institutions often have a large number of individual accounts. This means they must adopt a uniform standard for account due diligence, resulting in significant compliance costs. In view of this, the CRS provides the threshold of US$1 million for the division of individual accounts into high-value individual accounts and low-value ones as these are subject to different due diligence procedures. Financial institutions may choose to apply relatively simplified due diligence procedures (such as residence address testing) for low-value individual accounts, in order to reduce the compliance burden on financial institutions. Due diligence on low-value individual accounts usually lags that of high-value individual accounts by one year, allowing financial institutions more time to meet their compliance obligations with their low-value individual accounts.但需要注意的是,金融机构也可选择不适用上述以减轻其合规负担为目的的程序规定,而是对所有的账户采用统一适用于高价值个人账户的合规程序(即更高要求的合规程序),而且有可能在CRS的第一个申报期内即完成了所有存量高、低价值个人账户的尽职调查和信息申报。实践中具体应当以金融机构的内部政策为准。However, it should be noted that financial institutions may also choose not to apply the above-mentioned procedural requirement. Instead, they may adopt a uniform compliance procedure for all accounts. It is possible to complete due diligence and information declarations on all high and low-value individual accounts in the first declaring period of the CRS. In practice, the internal policies of the financial institutions take precedence.误区四:房产、古董字画和珠宝等非金融资产不需要申报在CRS下,金融账户涉税信息自动交换的核心是“账户”,也就是说跨国之间共享的信息是金融账户信息,而并非金融资产信息,因为一个金融账户有可能同时涉及金融资产和非金融资产。其中,金融资产的概念与金融机构身份属性以及金融账户类别的判定密切相关,单从金融资产本身无法判定其是否需要申报。一个金融账户如果属于需申报的账户,那么该账户下所持有的所有资产,不论是金融资产还是非金融资产,均需要申报和交换。Misunderstanding 4: Non-financial AssetsUnder the CRS, the core of automatic exchanges of tax information is the sharing of financial account information, not financial asset information. A financial account may involve both financial assets and non-financial assets. The need for a declaration does not depend solely on the financial assets themselves. If a financial account requires declaration, all assets held under the account, financial or non-financial, must be declared and the information exchanged.案例王先生是中国税收居民,其在开曼群岛设立了一家私人投资公司(Private Investment Company, “PIC”)A公司。A公司持有的资产中80%为金融资产,20%为非金融资产。那么在CRS下,如果该A公司属于金融机构(如投资机构),那么A公司在申报其金融账户(即投资机构的股权权益或者债权权益)时,其所持有的金融资产和非金融资产的价值全都应当作为账户余额来进行申报。Case StudyAnother individual whose surname is Wang is a tax resident of China. He owns a private investment company set up in the Cayman Islands, and 80% of the assets held by this company are financial while 20% are non-financial. Under the CRS guidelines, if the company belongs to a financial institution (such as an investment company), when the same company declares its financial account the financial and non-financial assets must be declared.误区五:CRS实施以后,设立离岸信托没有任何意义离岸信托在资产分离和保全、税收优化以及信息隐秘性上具有其他投资架构不可比拟的优势,因此在资产配置方面受到世界上很多高净值个人和家庭的青睐。在CRS下,信托也有可能被判定为是金融机构,而需要对其账户持有人(例如委托人和受益人等)进行尽职调查;或者被判定为是消极非金融机构,如果其在金融机构持有账户,则会被要求提供信托实际控制人(例如委托人和受益人)的信息。Misunderstanding 5: Offshore TrustsOffshore trusts have incomparable advantages over other investment frameworks in terms of asset segregation and preservation, tax optimization and privacy of information. Therefore, they are favored by many high net worth individuals and families in their global asset allocation. Under the CRS, a trust may be treated as a financial institution with due diligence required on its account holder (including the principal and beneficiaries), or it may be treated as a passive non-financial institution. If a financial institution holds an account, there is a requirement that information be provided on the person who actually controls the trust, such as the principal and the beneficiary.但是信托被纳入到CRS下的申报体系,并不会导致信托丧失其本身具有的资产分离和保全、税收优化以及信息隐秘等优势。从中国的角度,尽管CRS实施后,理论上中国税收居民在海外所设立信托的相关金融账户信息会被申报和交换到中国税务机关,但是这并不代表信托就失去了隐秘性。因为,CRS下的所谓“资产曝光”只是相对税务机关来说,而且CRS下跨国之间交换的信息具有十分严格的保密性要求,信托本身的隐秘性仍然存在,并不会公之于众。However, the inclusion of a trust in the declaration system under the CRS does not result in the trust losing its key advantages. From the point of view of China's tax authorities, although the relevant financial account information of China’s tax residents’ overseas trusts will be declared and exchanged with Chinese authorities, this does not mean that the trusts will lose their secrecy. Only the tax authorities have access to the asset information under the CRS, and there are strict confidentiality requirements for information exchanges.