In the latest speaker profile in our series, we sit down with Paul Balkus from Ernst & Young who is presenting the Transfer Pricing session at the upcoming 29th National Convention in Hobart.
Tell us about yourself
I have led Ernst & Young’s Oceania transfer pricing practice and have over 20 years of experience in the field of transfer pricing, servicing a broad range of clients. I have been involved in all aspects of transfer pricing including advance pricing arrangements, dispute resolution, planning and documentation.
I also have experience addressing transfer pricing issues in connection with various planning strategies involving IP migration, establishment of procurement centres, global IT system roll-outs, business restructurings and intercompany financing and service arrangements.
I have been instrumental in putting together and implementing a number of audit defence strategies which has spanned across a broad range of industries including: media and entertainment; telecommunications; apparel; energy and resources; pharmaceutical; financial services; and brown goods. I also have extensive experience in developing, negotiating and concluding both unilateral and bilateral Advance Pricing Agreements.
How long have you been affiliated with The Tax Institute?
I have a long standing relationship with The Tax Institute and have presented at the National Convention for the last 4 years.
What does National Convention mean to you, and more broadly, to the tax industry?
The National Convention provides a forum to reflect on the current transfer pricing landscape and in particular its role within the corporate tax framework. It also provides an opportunity to provide corporate taxpayers practical advice on what continues to be a more complex and controversial area of taxation.
What is the topic that you are presenting at the 29th National Convention?
I will be presenting on the introduction of the new transfer pricing laws contained in Division 815, including the legal and compliance impact of the new law. I will also outline the ATO’s current approach to transfer pricing including their recent focus on marketing hubs and intangible assets.
What can attendees expect to learn from your session?
Attendees can expect to gain an understanding of the changes that Division 815 brings from a legal perspective and what this practically means for taxpayers. They will also gain an understanding of the ATO’s current approach to transfer pricing.
What new or hot topics will you cover?
I will cover the new legislation and the hot topics of marketing hubs and intangible assets.
How will attending your session help delegates help their clients?
Delegates will be able to provide clients with an understanding of the practical implications of the change in the transfer pricing law and an understanding of what the ATO is currently targeting.
Which other sessions at the conference are you most interested in attending?
The Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) debate is one that has particular impact and influence on transfer pricing. As such, I am particularly interested in attending the Commissioner of Taxation’s address to hopefully hear his views on this topic and also attending the sessions on debt funding, tax deductibility of interest and E-commerce, Cloud and Cross-Border transactions to hear current thoughts on these issues and their impact on BEPS.
What do you like to do when you’re not knee-deep in tax?
I love to swim, play tennis and run a few kilometres as well as early morning sessions playing the classics on my grand piano – I also spend time with the family and meeting the challenges of a teenage daughter. Otherwise, it’s all about transfer pricing.
You’re invited to join us in Hobart for the 29th National Convention 26-28 March 2014. The Tax Institute’s National Convention is widely recognised as the essential annual event for tax professionals. But hurry! Advanced pricing ends this Friday!
Find out more about the conference and register now.