International Tax Review is part of the Delinian Group, Delinian Limited, 4 Bouverie Street, London, EC4Y 8AX, Registered in England & Wales, Company number 00954730
Copyright © Delinian Limited and its affiliated companies 2023

Accessibility | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Modern Slavery Statement

Shinzo Abe

Prime Minister, Japan

Shinzo Abe

Shinzo Abe has remained steadfast in his desire to implement tax reform measures in the face of opposition from members of his own Liberal Democratic Party and objections from some of his closest advisers.

His plan includes reducing Japan’s corporate tax rate, which stands at one of the highest in the world, and he also wants to implement a consumption tax rise. Japan’s room for manoeuvre and ability to implement reform were severely hampered by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake, which derailed the corporate tax cut contained in the Tax Reform Act 2011 and instead saw the implementation of a three-year surtax to assist the post-earthquake recovery.

But Abe has returned to the idea of tax reform time and again, and this year’s formation of a specialist reference group will do much to inspire confidence in the business community. Abe created the special task force, which includes the chief executive officers of eight large Japanese companies, and has charged it with advising on policies that could spur industrial competitiveness.

And in June, while an actual cut was not implemented, Abe announced that the framework for a future cut in the corporate tax rate was being installed. This has raised hope that the rate will be cut next year, or in 2015.

Abe has had the unenviable task of balancing the wishes of business with those of bodies such as the OECD during a time of national disaster recovery.

He heeded the OECD’s advice when the organisation in May said Japan is “poised for expansion” but that indirect tax hikes would be necessary to ensure economic growth in the country. As a result, the VAT rate will increase by three percentage points to 8% from April 2014.

Further reading

Japanese PM Abe still favours corporate tax cut

OECD calls for indirect tax hikes in Japan

The Global Tax 50 2013

« Previous

Tony Abbott

View the complete list

Next »

Tom Adams

more across site & bottom lb ros

More from across our site

The General Court reverses its position taken four years ago, while the UN discusses tax policy in New York.
Discussion on amount B under the first part of the OECD's two-pronged approach to international tax reform is far from over, if the latest consultation is anything go by.
Pillar two might be top of mind for many multinational companies, but the huge variations between countries’ readiness means getting ahead of the game now, argues Russell Gammon, chief solutions officer at Tax Systems.
ITR’s latest quarterly PDF is going live today, leading on the looming battle between the UN and the OECD for dominance in global tax policy.
Company tax changes are central to the German government’s plan to revive the economy, but sources say they miss the mark. Ralph Cunningham reports.
The winners of the ITR Americas Tax Awards have been announced for 2023!
There is a ‘huge demand’ for tax services in the Middle East, says new Clyde & Co partner Rachel Fox in an interview with ITR.
The ECB warns the tax could leave banks with weaker capital levels, while the UAE publishes guidance on its new corporate tax regime.
Caroline Setliffe and Ben Shem-Tov of Eversheds Sutherland give an overview of the US transfer pricing penalty regime and UK diverted profits tax considerations for multinational companies.
The result follows what EY said was one of the most successful years in the firm’s history.