There are no frozen personal bank accounts or other assets in Switzerland in the name of Viktor Yanukovych
You can download this press release as a PDF in English or Russian. The Swiss Federal Councils Decision of 13 December 2019 to extend for one year its freeze on the assets of President Yanukovych and his entourage, and the press release it has published on this occasion does not assert that President Yanukovych had or has any assets in Switzerland. On the contrary, as previously clarified in a letter dated 1 March 2017 (issued in respect of the Swiss Federal Councils similar decision and an announcement made in 2016), the Swiss authorities confirmed that:
there are no bank accounts or other assets in Switzerland held in the name of President Yanukovych that they have frozen (as President Yanukovych himself has always contended); and
the asset freezes imposed by Switzerland concern other persons (i.e. not President Yanukovych) listed in the Appendix to the Ordinance on the Freezing of Assets in Connection with Ukraine.
We draw attention again to our earlier Press Releases dated 3 March 2017 and 22 December 2017 dealing, respectively, with the 2016 Decision and announcement and 2017 Decision. The Swiss Federal Council still do not clearly state who the CHF 70 million referred to in their announcements belongs to, but, that said, the Swiss Federal Council has previously, in its 1 March 2017 letter, officially acknowledged that it does not belong to President Yanukovych. Indeed, the Swiss Federal Council, in its 13 December 2019 announcement, observes that Court rulings on the illicit origin of the assets have yet to be rendered in Ukraine. In the most recent proceedings before the General Court of the European Union, previously imposed sanctions against President Yanukovych, in place from March 2016-March 2019, were annulled. ENDS Notes to editors Joseph Hage Aaronson LLP is a law firm based in London representing President Yanukovych and Mr Oleksandr Viktorovych Yanukovych: www.jha.com Enquiries to Joseph Hage Aaronson LLP, Tel.: +44 (0)20 7851 8888.
An Assessment to Tax is never ‘stale’, but it might be out of date: HMRC v Tooth
This article briefly discusses the key points arising out of the decision of the UK Supreme Court in HMRC v Tooth  UKSC 17. The case considered (1) whether a discovery assessment could become “stale” and (2) the meaning of the phrase “deliberate inaccuracy”.
VATA 1994 s.47, Agency, Onward Supply Relief, & Double Taxation
On 12 July 2021, the First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber) (“FTT”) released its decision in Scanwell Logistics (UK) Limited v HMRC  UKFTT 261 (TC), rejecting the taxpayer’s claim for onward supply relief (“OSR”).
Whilst OSR is now limited, post-Brexit, to goods imported into Northern Ireland for onward supply to the EU, the FTT’s discussion of agency under section 47 of the Value Added Tax Act 1994 (“VATA”) is of broader interest.
The case serves as a reminder of the significant financial consequences that can result from errors in tax planning, as Scanwell was ultimately held liable for £5.7 million in unpaid import VAT despite the fact that the imported goods almost immediately left the UK (which, if properly planned, could have meant Scanwell was relieved from liability to import VAT).
Draft Finance Bill 2022—tax avoidance measures
Helen McGhee, senior associate at Joseph Hage Aaronson LLP, considers the draft Finance Bill 2022 clauses published on 20 July 2021 in relation to tax avoidance and recent updates to the tax avoidance regime.
Getting Closer: A Global Minimum Tax on Corporations
On 1 July 2021, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen announced that countries representing over 90% of global GDP had agreed to a global minimum tax on corporations (“GMCT”). The GMCT seeks to put a floor on tax competition on corporate income through the introduction of a minimum corporate tax of at least 15%. Whilst certain elements give rise to positive expectations, some caveats should be noted. Much will depend on (1) the outcome of future political negotiations and (2) the detail of the drafting at international and national levels.
The DBKAG & K (CJEU) decision: an opportunity for investment funds?
On 17 June 2021, the European Court decided the joint cases K (C-58/20) and DBKAG (C-59/20) regarding whether the supply of certain services constituted the “management of special investment funds”, benefiting from the VAT exemption enshrined in Article 135(1)(g) of Council Directive 2006/112/EC.