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‘Taxation also plays a role in DSM’s departure from the Netherlands'

After Shell and Unilever, DSM is the third major company to leave the Netherlands. Tax experts are not surprised: the business climate here is currently viewed as less favourable.

Jan van de Streek

DSM claims that taxation played no role in the decision to move its head office to Switzerland. Still, the move is remarkable. After all, DSM is not the only company to look abroad.

Experts on corporate taxation agree that taxation may also have played a role in DSM’s decision. Professor of Tax Law Jan van de Streek explains in Dutch newspaper NRC that much has changed in that respect in the Netherlands. 'The process already started at the turn of the century, when the Netherlands was forced by the European Commission to phase out a number of favourable schemes. At the time, the Netherlands only did so to a limited degree, but since the OECD started the debate on tax avoidance in 2013, things have moved fast.'

Among other things, Van de Streek cites the steady rise in corporate tax rates for companies, for example by limiting interest deduction for corporations and, most recently, the failure to proceed with the promised abolition of dividend tax for multinationals.

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