Washington (Oct. 17, 2002) -- The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has urged Congress to reject legislation that it says would penalize American businesses that locate their headquarters offshore in an effort to compete with foreign companies who have an unfair tax advantage over U.S. companies.


"Penalizing American businesses - that employ American workers and produce American products - for creating an offshore headquarters will hurt the U.S. and help our foreign competitors,” said Martin Regalia, Chamber chief economist.  “If members of Congress are interested in helping American companies improve our economy, they should revisit the U.S. tax system that drives businesses offshore in the first place.”


Proponents of the legislation claim businesses are unfairly avoiding their share of taxes by locating their headquarters offshore.


The Chamber urged Congress to reject proposals that would treat inverted corporations as if they were still domestic; impose “moratoriums” on corporate inversions or disregard the tax inversion for a predetermined period of time; treat inverted corporations’ property as being sold for fair market value on the date before the “move”; and deny the use of international tax treaty benefits.  The Chamber opposes a recent trend in Congress to include language in non-tax legislation that would bar federal contracts to certain inverted U.S. companies.


“Our overriding goal should be to fashion a tax system that will attract businesses to the United States, rather than drive them away,” Regalia said.


-- Electronic Accountant Newswire staff

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