Revenue Dept is not entitled to challenge the ITAT’s decision to determine the interest rate ALP of funds advanced to AE as per Euribor if the earlier ITAT judgements relied upon by ITAT have not been challenged

Feb 13, 2015

CIT vs. Tata Autocomp Systems Ltd (Bombay High Court)

The assessee advanced funds to its wholly owned subsidiary in Germany on interest-free terms. The TPO held that the transaction was an “international transaction” and held that the assessee ought to have received interest at 10.25% being the lending rate charged by the banks in India (Arms length price). The DRP enhanced the rate of interest to 12%. On appeal, the Tribunal followed its earlier view in VVF Ltd. Vs. DCIT (ITA No.673/Mum/06) and DCIT Vs. Tech Mahindra Ltd (46 SOT 141) and held that as the amount was advanced to an AE in Germany, the ALP rate of the interest had to be determined by adopting the EURIBOR rate of interest i.e. rates prevailing in Europe. The Department challenged the said finding of the Tribunal in the High Court on the basis that the EURIBOR does not govern the monetary markets or interest rates in India, which is the residence country of assessee and EURIBOR rate is not applicable to the loans for which foreign currency has to be purchased by the Lender.

HELD by the High Court dismissing the appeal:We find that the impugned order of the Tribunal inter alia has followed the decisions of the Bombay Bench of the Tribunal in cases of “VVF Ltd. Vs. DCIT” (supra) and “DCIT Vs. Tech Mahindra Ltd.” 46 SOT 141 to reach the conclusion that ALP in the case of loans advanced to Associate Enterprises would be determined on the basis of rate of interest being charged in the country where the loan is received/consumed. Mr.Suresh Kumar the learned counsel for the revenue informed us that the Revenue has not preferred any appeal against the decision of the Tribunal in “VVF Ltd. Vs. DCIT” (supra) and “DCIT Vs. Tech Mahindra Ltd.”(supra) on the above issue. No reason has been shown to us as to why the Revenue seeks to take a different view in respect of the impugned order from that taken in “VVF Ltd. Vs. DCIT” (supra) and “DCIT Vs. Tech Mahindra Ltd.”(supra). The Revenue not having filed any appeal, has in fact accepted the decision of the Tribunal in “VVF Ltd. Vs. DCIT” (supra) and “DCIT Vs. Tech Mahindra Ltd.”(supra). In view of the above we see no reason to entertain the present appeal as in similar matters the Revenue has accepted the view of the Tribunal which has been relied upon by the impugned order.

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