With people across the world getting nearer owing to globalization, the international transactions including the business dealings have seen a drastic increase. The trade across international borders are often discouraged by various restrictions in the host country, the most vital being taxation norms. Different countries have different accepted taxation systems, which results in the foreign investor bearing double taxation. The quantum of tax computable depends upon the relationship between the country of domicile of the foreign investor and the host country.
The tax burden faced is usually due to the jurisdiction of tax legislations of both the country of the residence as well as the country of business over the same income accrued to the hands of the foreign investor leading to double taxation. Such tax regimes adversely affect the trading activities being carried out overseas. With a view to promote and encourage international business transactions and provide relief from the ambit of double tax, the countries enter into double taxation avoidance agreement (hereinafter referred to as “DTAA”).
On March 19, 2018, India and Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) of China have signed a DTAA with the objective of facilitating business activities in each other’s territory. India is Hong Kong’s 4th largest export market destination (after China, US, Japan) and Hong Kong is India’s 3rd largest export market (after US, UAE). India’s exports increased to about 15.8% and imports from Hong Kong increased by 35.9% in 2017. The execution of DTAA is expected to improve transparency in tax matters and will help curb tax evasion and tax avoidance.