LTO serves 15-day notice to TeliaSonera to clear tax dues

Kathmandu, January 3

The Large Taxpayer’s Office (LTO) Lalitpur has asked Swedish firm TeliaSonera to clear all its tax dues from the Ncell buyout deal to the government within 15 days.

Publishing a notice today, LTO Lalitpur has stated that TeliaSonera has not yet paid its due tax despite receiving the notice of amended assessment that the government had sent to the company on June 30 last year. Though LTO had fixed the liable capital gains tax (CGT) in the Ncell buyout deal back then at Rs 60 billion, inclusive of interests and other fees, the tax due as of January 2 has reached Rs 65 billion, inclusive of all taxes and penalties, as per LTO.

Moreover, LTO has warned the Swedish company that the office will expedite tax collection and recovery procedures as per the existing laws if the company fails to clear the liable tax amount to the government within the given time.

“We have already notified TeliaSonera about the notice. In case the company does not clear the liable taxes that it owes to the government in Nepal, we will initiate other ways of recovering the tax from the Swedish firm,” said an LTO official, without divulging the plan of action in case the company does not heed to the call.

As per LTO, TeliaSonera will have to justify its position on the tax amount that the government has fixed while the company sold its asset (Ncell) to Axiata. In case TeliaSonera finds the taxable amount unreasonable, it can also appeal to the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) for reassessment of the tax or appeal to the revenue tribunal office here in Nepal.

However, TeliaSonera has been constantly refusing to pay the tax determined by the government citing that the company has no tax liability on Ncell deal. This is the third time that LTO has served such notice to TeliaSonera. LTO had written letters to the Swedish company twice in June asking it to clear its tax liability from the profit that it made while selling Ncell to Axiata in April, 2015.

Though LTO has calculated due tax of TeliaSonera at Rs 65 billion, tax liability to the Swedish company will be lower as Axiata has already paid 15 per cent of the applicable CGT of the Ncell deal on behalf of TeliaSonera.