This Tax Strategy addresses the management of tax risks arising for Element Materials Technology Group Limited and its subsidiaries. Its principles apply to all Group companies and all entities under the control of the Group, on a worldwide basis. However, the strategy presented here specifically addresses the UK position in accordance with the requirement to publish the group’s UK tax strategy under UK legislation, being Schedule 19 of Finance Act 2016.
This document has been approved by the Board of Directors of Element Materials Technology Group Ltd.
This tax strategy document is effective for the year ended 31 December 2021.
It will be reviewed annually by the CFO, and any amendments will be approved by the Board of Directors.
How we manage UK tax risks
There are a number of tax risk factors arising from operating in a complex global environment, including:
- failure to keep abreast of continuously evolving tax legislation;
- failure to adopt and implement transfer pricing legislative requirements;
- failure to effectively manage the tax aspects of changes to the business, e.g. mergers and acquisitions.
Element seeks to minimise and manage tax risks by:
- ensuring the members of the Tax Team have the necessary expertise and in-depth understanding of the business;
- engaging external professional tax advisers, particularly when advice is required in relation to complex issues, the interpretation and application of complex tax legislation, or where the internal Tax Team do not have the necessary technical knowledge;
- ensuring appropriate systems and controls are in place to accurately calculate and report tax liabilities.
The overall responsibility for tax compliance lies with the Board of Directors and includes responsibility for all direct and indirect taxes, including corporation tax, VAT, payroll taxes, import duties and property taxes.
The Board ensures there is an effective organisation and control environment in place for tax purposes by maintaining an internal tax function with relevant technical expertise and by appointing an Audit Committee to review the effectiveness of the risk management process. The Group also has a Group finance function to evaluate ongoing risk management, governance and internal control processes and ensure these are operating effectively.
The Chief Financial Officer oversees the Group tax policies, procedures and controls. A dedicated internal tax team, led by the Director of Tax, is responsible for the implementation of the Group’s tax strategy and supporting tax policies.
Our business attitude to tax planning
The Board’s guiding principle is that the Group will be compliant with all local tax reporting obligations and will settle any tax liabilities as and when they fall due. This approach applies to all territories in which the Group operates.
However, the Group always aims to operate in a tax efficient manner by utilising tax exemptions, incentives and reliefs, to the extent available, in its commercial business activities e.g. tax credits linked to R&D activities which is a common incentive available in certain jurisdictions. We take appropriate professional advice, when required, to confirm the extent to which reliefs and incentives are available.
The role of the Tax Team within the Group is to work with the business to provide advice across all aspects of tax and ensure compliance with local laws, rules, regulations and disclosure requirements, to support the commercial needs of the Group and to create shareholder value.
The level of risk we are prepared to accept
The Board takes a low risk approach to the management of tax risks within the Group, with a focus on compliance. Transactions are always underpinned by legitimate business purposes and the Group will not undertake tax-based schemes which create artificial tax advantages. Where uncertainties arise in interpretation of tax legislation, the Group engages third party expert technical advice to reduce risk as much as possible.
As a multinational business, the Group is liable to taxation in multiple jurisdictions around the world and maintaining a good relationship with relevant tax authorities is paramount. We will not undertake tax planning which could negatively impact our relationship with HMRC or any other tax authority around the world, or have an adverse impact on the Group’s reputation and brand.
In accordance with UK legislation introduced in the Criminal Finances Act 2017, the Group has issued a policy in respect of the Anti-Facilitation of Tax Evasion.
How we work with HMRC and other tax authorities
The Group works to develop and maintain a collaborative relationship based on trust and openness with HMRC, as well as with tax authorities in other jurisdictions. We have a dedicated HMRC Customer Compliance Manager with whom our Tax Team are in regular contact. We work proactively and professionally with HMRC to address uncertain tax positions, where they exist. Should a disagreement or uncertainty arise, we seek to resolve the issues in a timely and collaborative manner and to the satisfaction of both parties.