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The free movement rights enshrined in the treaties founding these organizations and the standards set by them in hard law (e.g. TFEU-provisions on free movement and on State aid, EU-directives, and the multilateral OECD/CoE mutual assistance convention) as well as in soft law (e.g. EU-recommendations and OECD deliverables on BEPS (base erosion and profi t shifting), have far-reaching consequences for national taxation rights. This is also true for bilateral tax treaties concluded between States. Although bilateral tax treaties can also be considered an expression of tax sovereignty, at the same time they limit the taxing powers of the contracting States. European law especially limits the (tax) sovereignty of  Member States.

The aim of the ACTL research is twofold: (1) to establish the limits on national tax sovereignty and national taxing jurisdiction set by international and supranational law,


(2) to assess whether these limits should be narrowed or broadened on the basis of criteria such as level playing field, interjurisdictional equity, free movement of persons and capital, budgetary stability, tax base integrity, fair interstate policy competition and taxpayers rights. The emphasis in the research program lies on EU law given its major influence on national and bilateral tax law in the EU.

In the research programme a distinction is drawn between the influence of double tax treaties and other treaties on tax sovereignty (theme 1); the impact of the TFEU freedoms and the EU State aid rules (theme 2), the impact of the various harmonisation measures in the area of tax law within the EU (theme 3) and taxpayers rights (theme 4).

The objective of this research programme is to meet the highest international standard of academic excellence.

More information

A complete description of the ACTL research programme, including a detailed breakdown of research themes, is contained in the document attached for download.