In the framework of the budget for 2017, the Federal Government reached an agreement on several tax measures. On 16 October 2016, during the policy statement, the Prime Minister announced what follows:
- The speculation tax for individuals on the transfer of quoted shares would be abolished as of 1 January 2017;
- Tax on stock exchange transactions: the limits would be doubled (for shares, bonds and funds) and the tax would be extended to foreign platforms;
- Increase in the withholding tax rate from 27 to 30 % as of 1 January 2017;
- Introduction of a new anti-abuse rule regarding the “internal capital gains” on shares: in case of contribution in capital of shares by an individual, there would be no tax-free step-up (unrealised capital gains would be deemed to be considered as tax reserves in order not to avoid the dividend withholding tax);
- Company cars: employees could freely choose between a company car, another mode of transportation or an increase in the net salary;
- Limitation of the deduction (based on the CO2 emissions) of fuel cards within companies;
- Some tax and social incentives would be linked to a minimal period of residence or employment in Belgium;
- Intensification of the fight against tax fraud.
What about the major corporate tax reform announced last August?
The Government has confirmed the announced corporate tax reform but the texts are not yet ready. The process continues in order to result in a reform as soon as possible.
The aim of the Government is also:
- to reduce the corporate tax rate;
- to support investments in SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Entities), the Digital Agenda and the Starters;
- to create jobs;
- to bring (more) tax certainty and tax fairness; and
- for individuals, to introduce taxation of capital gains on “large participations” (majority shareholders), but also to restore incentives in order to attract capital towards SMEs and to stimulate capital increase.
The above tax measures have not yet been drafted and are still subject to further changes.
For any questions, don’t hesitate to contact your local PwC contact.