he Group Tax Strategy, which the Management Board of voestalpine AG adopted as part of the Group Tax Guideline, represents the voestalpine Group’s commitment to comply with the tax rules and regulations applicable in a given country in connection with all of its business activities and decisions.
The key principles of the Group Tax Strategy are as follows:
- Tax policy
As part of its global strategy, the voestalpine Group pursues the goal of minimizing its total costs. This is why tax election options are utilized to the extent allowed by law in order to lower the Group’s tax liabilities unless doing so adversely affects the Group’s business. The design of the Group’s tax policies complies with all applicable tax laws in any case.
- Corporate responsibility
The Group pays taxes wherever it generates value added. Transfer pricing within the Group is based on the OECD Transfer Pricing Guidelines. Transfer prices are not used to design tax policy.
- Relationships with government agencies
The voestalpine Group fulfills all cooperation duties under tax law.
In particular, it complies with all retention and recording requirements, whether temporal or geographical. The voestalpine Group collaborates proactively in the processes associated with assessments of new laws within the institutions established for that purpose.
Each Group company’s executive management is responsible for implementing and complying with tax rules and regulations as well as the Group Tax Guideline. voestalpine AG and its divisions’ lead companies regularly review and update the Group Tax Guideline and monitor implementation thereof and compliance therewith in the Group companies. The functional responsibility for these activities at the Management Board level rests with the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of voestalpine AG. In order to ensure compliance with the Group Tax Strategy, steering processes and monitoring measures were developed for voestalpine AG and the divisions’ lead companies regarding the key tax processes in the Group companies that are integral to the Group Tax Guideline.
Furthermore, appropriate actions were taken to ensure compliance with the Group Tax Guideline in the long term. Among other things, this includes reviews of employees’ qualifications, clear job descriptions, regular sharing of information related to task-specific matters, and employee training.
The Group companies, the divisions’ lead companies, and voestalpine AG regularly exchange information in order to identify tax risks early on. Discussions within Controlling are carried out to this end on a regular basis with the aim of monitoring the implementation of measures related to material tax issues. Changes in tax laws or modifications of business models are coordinated with the divisions’ lead companies. The given Group company analyzes the effects thereof and develops suitable measures based thereon, as necessary in collaboration with the division’s lead company or voestalpine AG.
If a Group company realizes that a tax return (or tax declaration) previously filed with the tax authorities is incorrect or incomplete, such Group company shall immediately notify the relevant tax authority thereof in accordance with national statutory requirements and shall make the necessary adjustments. The respective Group company or the Group tax department are notified if such events are discovered, and steps are taken to fix and/or eliminate problems of this nature. Group companies are required to engage an external tax consultant in order to obtain their assessment of material facts and thus to mitigate any tax risks. The voestalpine Group has commissioned KPMG to serve as its global tax partner with respect to assurance of tax compliance within the voestalpine Group.
Any concerns regarding unethical or unlawful conduct may be reported using the Web-based whistleblower system. This system is also available for stakeholders to voice their concerns. These principles ensure the Group’s sustainable development.
As a multinational Group with consolidated revenue in excess of EUR 750 million, voestalpine AG (the Group parent) annually submits a Country-by-Country Report to the appropriate Austrian tax authority.
See the chapter, “Investments,” in voestalpine’s Annual Report 2021/22 for the names and domiciles of the Group companies. The country-specific disclosures in the Country-by-Country Report (see table “Taxes: Country-by-Country Reporting”) concern entities that are included in the Consolidated Financial Statements by virtue of being fully consolidated; see the “Investments” chapter of voestalpine’s Annual Report 2021/22. Hence information on entities measured at equity (classified as “KEA” or “KEG” in the aforementioned chapter) as well as on unconsolidated entities (K0) are not contained in aforesaid Report. The data concern the period from April 1, 2021, through March 31, 2022.
The table is presented in the Appendix.