December 2023

  • Bulgaria
    • Bulgaria Implements Minimum Taxation Directive

      Bulgaria has gazetted amendments to the Corporate Income Tax Act, implementing the provisions of the Minimum Taxation Directive (2022/2523).

      The rules ensure a global minimum level of taxation for multinational enterprise groups and large-scale domestic groups within the European Union. Additionally, the amendments include the introduction of a domestic top-up tax.

  • China
    • China to Adjust Import and Export Tariffs on Certain Goods from January 1

      The Ministry of Finance released on December 20, 2023 the Announcement of the Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council on Adjusting Tariffs for 2024, stating that the country will adjust the import and export tariffs on certain goods starting January 1, 2024.

      According to the Announcement, China will implement provisional import tariff rates lower than the most-favored-nation rates on 1,010 items starting January 1, 2024. First, import tariffs on key resources, equipment and components that are domestically scarce, like lithium chloride, low arsenic fluorite, and gas diffusion layers for fuel cells will be lowered. Second, certain anti-cancer medications and drugs for rare diseases, as well as relevant raw materials, will be subject to zero import tariffs, and import tariffs on foods for special medical purposes and other related products will be reduced. Third, import tariffs on sweet corn, coriander and burdock seeds will be cut. The Announcement also outlines other major changes, such as adding new tax items like decorative papers, high-end iron and steel products and others. There will be a total of 8,957 tax items after the adjustment.

    • Shanghai: Urban land use tax implementation regulations continue to be implemented until the end of 2028

      According to the website of the Shanghai Municipal People's Government on December 20, the Shanghai Municipal Government issued Notice No. 63 (2023) to clarify that after evaluation, the validity period of the Implementation Regulations of Shanghai Urban Land Use Tax (2019) No. 6) has been extended to December 31, 2028.

      The Regulations on the Implementation of the Urban Land Use Tax in Shanghai make it clear that the urban land use tax in Shanghai is divided into five tax brackets according to different regions: (1) Regions within the inner ring road: one to three levels; (2) Areas outside the inner ring line and within the outer Ring line: Level 2 to Level 4; (3) Areas outside the Outer Ring Line: Level 3 to 5. The tax standard of each tax grade area is as follows: the annual tax of the first-level area is 15 yuan per square meter; Secondary area, annual tax of 10 yuan per square meter; Third level area, annual tax of 6 yuan per square meter; Level 4 area, annual tax of 3 yuan per square meter; The annual tax of the five-level area is 1.5 yuan per square meter.

    • Shanghai: Continue to implement the adjusted property tax deduction ratio of the original value of the property in 2024

      On December 20, the website of the Shanghai Municipal People's Government published the Notice of the Shanghai Municipal People's Government on the continued implementation of the Adjusted Real Estate Tax Deduction Ratio of the original Value of Real Estate.

      According to the "Notice", Shanghai Government Regulation (2019) No. 5 specifies that since January 1, 2019, the city will calculate the taxpayers who pay the property tax according to the remaining value of the property, and the proportion of the original value of the property deduction will be adjusted to 30%. After assessment, the city continues to implement the adjusted real estate tax deduction ratio of the original value of the real estate, which will be implemented from January 1, 2024.

    • China to Suspend Tariff Concessions for Some Taiwanese Products Granted under the ECFA

      The Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council released on December 20, 2023 the Announcement on Suspending Tariff Concessions for Some Taiwanese Products Granted under the Cross-Straits Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), according to a statement made on the website of the Ministry of Finance on December 21, 2023. The Announcement will take effect on January 1, 2024.

      As Taiwan's discriminatory measures of prohibiting and restricting Chinese mainland's exports have violated the provisions of the ECFA, the Customs Tariff Commission decides to suspend the tariff concessions for some Taiwanese products granted under the Agreement. Starting from January 1, 2024, 12 taxable products including propylene and paraxylene originating in Taiwan, as listed in the Annex, will not be applicable to the agreed tax rates, but are subject to the existing rules instead, said the Announcement.

  • Focus Africa
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Singapore
  • Switzerland
    • Swiss duties on industrial products abolished

      Since 1 January this year, Switzerland is no longer charging import duties on industrial goods of any origin. Building on a decade of groundwork, this is a significant trade policy measure with an estimated total welfare gain of over CHF 860 million a year for the Swiss economy. Lifting industrial tariffs improves Switzerland's standing as a business and industrial hub by easing the financial and administrative burden on both companies and consumers. It makes it easier for Swiss industry to procure competitive inputs and to diversify. In turn, this will raise Swiss companies' productivity at home and abroad, increase their competitive standing and streamline trade relations overall. Tariffs lifted on consumer goods and manufacturing inputs Industrial products in Switzerland cover intermediate inputs for manufacturing processes, such as capital goods, raw materials, salt, semi-finished products and machinery, as well as consumer goods, such as bicycles, household appliances, clothing and shoes. However, agricultural products (including live animals and plants, foodstuffs and luxury foods, processed agricultural products, seeds and animal feed) and fishery products are not classified as industrial products. Customs duties will therefore still apply when importing agricultural products to Switzerland. Reduced administrative burden for companies Alongside the removal of industrial tariffs, a number of changes have also been made to simplify Swiss customs tariffs and the rules on proof of origin, which will help to reduce the administrative burden on Swiss companies. In a competitive environment, consumers also stand to benefit from the cost savings. The federal government will review the impact on the prices of the products concerned in a monitoring programme. The removal of industrial tariffs does not change the customs clearance process itself: importers are still required to make an import declaration and pay other fees and charges incurred on import, including VAT. The decision to abolish industrial tariffs was taken by Parliament on 1 October 2021 by amending the Customs Tariff Act. At its meeting on 2 February 2022, the Federal Council scheduled the measure to come into effect on 1 January 2024. By removing customs barriers, Switzerland – as a small, highly integrated economy – is sending a clear signal in favour of maintaining and expanding unhindered trade flows in an increasingly protectionist global trading environment.


  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United States