|This might be news ...|
Respected US academic and IP Finance blogger Professor Mike Mireles reported yesterday on a conference, “Taxation of Intellectual Property in the Global Economy”, backed by Georgetown University. Mike's blogpost gives some idea of what this event, held on 11 March, was all about. The title itself is really promising: the words "taxation", "intellectual property" and "global economy" suggested deep thinking about tax strategy across a world in which online trading, increasingly harmonised health and safety considerations and interoperability mean that what works in one country should work in many, if not all.
But titles, like appearances, can be deceptive. A look at the final programme's agenda reveals that, while "intellectual property" is the theme, only one IP right -- the ubiquitous patent -- gets a name check [one of our readers recently complained with some justification that the terms 'IP' and 'patents' are not synonymous, as anyone who has worked in the entertainment industry can testify]. "Taxation" is of course the target topic, but only one narrow aspect of the topic is in focus, investment incentives through the medium of the patent box. "Global economy" is the ideal backdrop, but the only country other than the United States to get a mention is somewhere rather vaguely called "Abroad". Oh, and the speakers are all affiliated to US institutions or businesses. Anyone looking for something to do with the OECD, BEPS, general issues regarding the taxation of royalty streams, the appropriate location of IP portfolios and a host of other labels that concern IP tax-payers might well be disappointed.
You can enjoy the proceedings of this conference here.