Vodafone wants tax talks outside of Indian jurisdiction

6 Aug 2013

UK-based Vodafone Group has proposed that talks with the Indian government regarding its USD2 billion tax dispute be held under a neutral authority rather than under Indian jurisdiction, the Economic Times writes citing a source familiar with the matter. In June this year, the cabinet supported a move to resolve the conflict – which relates to Vodafone’s liability to pay taxes on the acquisition of Hutchison Whampoa’s stake in Vodafone India (then Hutchison Essar) in 2007 – under arbitration and conciliation laws rather than through the courts. Vodafone has offered that the matter be settled under the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) or through ‘amicable talks’ outside of Indian or UNCITRAL jurisdiction. The UK group noted that at present the two parties are involved in ‘talks about talks’, holding discussions on how to resolve the authority issue, adding: ‘We have always said we would like to reach a solution that is acceptable to both parties. However, we will not agree to any proposal that is likely to prejudice our legal position and would run counter to the interests of our shareholder.’

India, Vodafone India