Belgium’s Alternative Tax Regime for the Diamond Sector* Alternative tax regimes do not provide State aid as long as they raise the amount of tax paid and they are justified by the nature or general scheme of the normal system of taxation. Introduction During the past three years, the Commission has been pursuing multinational companies that pay too little tax. Its main objection to the tax treatment of these companies is that the alternative methods of taxation, such as “advance tax rulings”, that are used to estimate their income do not result in an amount of tax that they would have paid under the “ordinary” tax system. Hence, it was a bit surprising when recently the Commission approved an alternative method for taxing diamond traders and processors in Belgium. Antwerp is the

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