As previously announced, a number of new tax measures has been announced in the framework of the Belgian government formation and the budget for 2015. Some of these will also have an impact on transfer pricing:
The plan is to invest heavily in data mining tools for case selection purposes. These are likely to be used for much more than transfer pricing purposes, but it definitely reflects the risk assessment approach recently advocated by the OECD.
A focus will be put on a proactive interaction between tax payers and tax authorities. This could indicate that some form of horizontal monitoring (cfr the Netherlands) or voluntary cooperative compliance programmes might be introduced in the future. Increased transparency on inter-company transactions and proactive interaction on the transfer pricing policy is therefore likely to become the norm.
The important independent role of the Service for Advanced Decisions is re-emphasised. It is even explicitly mentioned that the Service can express itself on anti-abuse.
Of course, all these measures still need to be further clarified and eventually implemented but the above trends are nevertheless already noteworthy.