Aussie team in Portugal discussing tax treaty

By Tom Ravlic

August 5, 2022

Delegate to the 3rd round of talks on a double-taxation agreement between Australia and Portugal. (Twitter)

A team of Australian officials is in Portugal participating in the third round of double-taxation negotiations.

These negotiations are taking place to establish — for the first time — a tax treaty between Australia and Portugal.

News of the Australian delegation’s visit to Portugal to try and broker a double-tax agreement was highlighted on Twitter by Australia’s ambassador to Portugal, Claire Rochecouste.

Rochecouste posted a photograph of herself and 14 officials at the ambassador’s official residence.


“Not often outnumbered by Aussie officials in Lisbon! Great to welcome delegations to the Residence for a well-deserved break from the negotiating table during the 3rd round of talks on a Double Taxation Agreement between Australia and Portugal,” Rochecouste said.

Australia has tax treaties with 40 jurisdictions but there is none with Portugal.

The Australian Taxation Office website says one of the purposes of tax treaties is to eliminate or minimise the prospects of companies avoiding taxation.

“They prevent double taxation and fiscal evasion, and foster cooperation between Australia and other international tax authorities by enforcing their respective tax laws,” the ATO says.

The absence of a double-taxation agreement treaty has been an issue raised over the years by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Portuguese Australian Chamber of Commerce.

One submission sent by the chamber to DFAT as a part of a consultation on Australia-European Free Trade Agreement negotiations covers taxation as one of a range of issues that need resolution.

“A Double Tax Agreement (DTA) between Australia and Portugal is sorely needed as well, the lack of which negatively impacts current and potential commercial relationships and investment flows between our two countries,” the chamber submission says.

“Portugal and Luxembourg are the only two Western European countries with which Australia lacks a DTA, an anomaly that can hopefully be rectified with little effort on both sides.”


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