Consistency in tax policy is considered more important by investors than predictability or complexity of tax regimes, a Deloitte survey of Asia-Pacific region has found.

With tax policy being high priority when considering investing in the Asia Pacific region, achieving this consistency should be carefully considered, said the 2014 Asia Pacific Tax Complexity Survey report.

This survey – which covered 800 financial and tax professionals in 20 jurisdictions in Asia Pacific region – also found that high growth markets, such as India and China, continued to face challenges in providing consistent and predictable tax regimes for taxpayers.

India, China and Indonesia are expected to be the three most complex tax regimes by 2017, the Survey has predicted. Hong Kong and Singapore are among the least complex.

This survey highlighted the key tax trends facing businesses operating in the Asia Pacific region.

As a follow-up to the inaugural 2010 report, the findings for this year reveal a shift by businesses in placing greater focus on consistency of tax policies.

This finding is a reversal of the 2010 study where businesses placed greater emphasis on complexity and predictability of tax policies when deciding to enter or exit a market in the Asia Pacific region.

On an overall basis, tax has become more complex, less consistent and less predictable than it was three years ago.

“The principles of tax consistency, complexity and predictability increasingly influence the decision of corporates as to whether they will invest in a market. What we have found is that tax regimes in Asia Pacific have got increasingly more complex, bringing with it risk and uncertainty to businesses operating in the region,” said Alan Tsoi, Deloitte’s Asia Pacific Regional Managing Director for Tax and Legal.

(This article was published on April 8, 2014)
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