Vodafone responds to govt's conciliation offer on tax dispute | business | Hindustan Times
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Vodafone responds to govt's conciliation offer on tax dispute

business Updated: Dec 31, 2013 20:51 IST

PTI
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British telecom major Vodafone on Tuesday submitted its response to the finance ministry's proposal for a non-binding conciliation to settle the long pending Rs 11,200 crore tax dispute.

It could not be immediately known whether the company has accepted the government offer for out of court settlement of the tax dispute.

The dispute relates to the 2007 acquisition of Hutchison Whampoa's stake in Hutchison Essar by Vodafone. It has been asked to pay Rs 11,200 crore tax on the acquisition.

"We have got Vodafone's reply," a top official told PTI without going into the details.

Vodafone, which has been insisting on conciliation under the UNCITRAL, did not respond to an email enquiry in this regard.

Recently, finance minister P Chidambaram had said that Vodafone has been asked to reply by December 31 on the conciliation proposal.

Seeking to resolve the long-standing tax dispute with Vodafone, the Cabinet in June had approved a non-binding conciliation with the British telecom major.

The outcome of the conciliation, however, needs to be ultimately vetted by Parliament as it would require an amendment to the Income-tax Act.

The conciliation has been proposed under the Indian arbitration law and not under the UNCITRAL as sought by Vodafone. However, no timeframe has been set for conclusion of the conciliation proceeding.

The Supreme Court last year had ruled in Vodafone's favour, saying that it was not liable to pay any tax over the acquisition of mobile phone assets in India from the Hong Kong-based Hutchison.

But the government, later in the year, changed the rules to enable it to make retroactive tax claims on the already - concluded deals.