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2019/2020  KAN-CCMAV1021U  International Taxation of Corporate Groups

English Title
International Taxation of Corporate Groups

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Start time of the course Spring
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Max. participants 100
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Business Economics and Auditing
Course coordinator
  • Peter Koerver Schmidt - CBS Law
Main academic disciplines
  • Tax law
Teaching methods
  • Blended learning
Last updated on 12-02-2019

Relevant links

Learning objectives
Development of personal competencies:
The overall aim of the course is to enable students to understand and analyze the tax framework regulating the behavior of multinational enterprises (MNEs). The purpose of the course is to provide students the ability to interpret the relevant legal rules and to connect these rules to the facts at hand. In addition, the course should enable students to independently identify nuances in the legal judgment based on the underlying circumstances. Finally, the course aims at providing students with insights into the policy context of the relevant legislation.

Goal description:
At the highest possible level, the course aims at making students able to identify, analyze, and solve issues of importance for MNEs within the three dimensions of international tax law (internal law, tax treaties, and the EU tax law) while taking account of the rules and principles governing MNE’s international tax planning. Furthermore, the course seeks to enable students to discuss related tax policy issues in an international context at a high level.
  • Obtain an overview of the relevant legislation within the course
  • Understand the key content of the sources of law within the course.
  • Understand the relationship between the different sources of law.
  • Master the legal method and be able to analyze issues and show how concrete examples can be solved by the application of relevant sources of law.
  • Be able to reflect upon how citizens and companies through planning and action can obtain legal tax advantages.
  • Be able to discuss the related tax policy issues in an international context.
Course prerequisites
It is recommended that students have followed and passed a basic course in tax law before taking this course.
International Taxation of Corporate Groups:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Written sit-in exam on CBS' computers
Individual or group exam Individual exam
Assignment type Multiple choice
Duration 2 hours
Grading scale 7-point grading scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and external examiner
Exam period Summer
Aids Closed book: no aids
However, at all written sit-in exams the student has access to the basic IT application package (Microsoft Office (minus Excel), digital pen and paper, 7-zip file manager, Adobe Acrobat, Texlive, VLC player, Windows Media Player), and the student is allowed to bring simple writing and drawing utensils (non-digital). PLEASE NOTE: Students are not allowed to communicate with others during the exam.
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
If the number of registered candidates for the make-up examination/re-take examination warrants that it may most appropriately be held as an oral examination, the programme office will inform the students that the make-up examination/re-take examination will be held as an oral examination instead.
Course content, structure and pedagogical approach

In recent years, the tax behavior of MNEs has moved to the very top of the international political agenda. Accordingly, international organizations such as the G20, the OECD and the EU have all been involved in initiatives aimed at mitigating MNEs aggressive tax planning in order to protect national tax bases against base erosion and profit shifting. Moreover, other stakeholders – such as NGOs and the general media – have shown unprecedented interest into the tax matters of MNE’s. As a consequence, it is not sufficient for corporate decision makers and their advisors to only take account of the legislation itself when deciding on tax matters, as perceived amoral tax behavior may cause reputational damage.     


Against this background, the course provides a thorough understanding of the legal framework governing cross-border tax issues of relevance for MNEs by discussing the three dimensions of international tax law: 1) internal tax law, 2) tax treaties, and 3) EU tax law. Focus will be on the latter two dimensions. Moreover, the course will provide an insight into the current debate on corporate social responsibility and the policy discussions that influence the tax framework for MNEs.


The course will focus on the following topics of relevance for MNEs:

  • Interpretation and application of tax treaties
  • Distribution clauses in tax treaties
  • EU tax law
  • International tax planning and anti-avoidance rules
  • Tax strategy and corporate social responsibility
  • International tax policy
Description of the teaching methods
To a great extent, the teaching consists of case discussions and discussions based on scientific articles. Active participation is expected from all students during classes – especially in relation to case reviews. It is a prerequisite for participation that students show up well prepared as only parts of the curriculum is reviewed by the traditional lecture method and the rest is employed in relation to cases and discussions of selected issues highlighted in relevant articles. Meanwhile, it is also expected that students have made themselves familiar with the general terms and obtained a basic understanding of daily curriculum before attending.
Feedback during the teaching period
Oral at case discussions in class and automatic feedback for quizzes and assignments uploaded on Canvas.
Student workload
Class participation 30 hours
Preparation and blended learning activities 135 hours
Exam and preparation for the exam 41 hours
Expected literature

Introduction to the Law of Double Taxation Conventions, Michael Lang et al., Linde Verlag / IBFD.


International Tax Policy – Between Competition and Cooperation, Tilly Dagan, Cambridge University Press.


The OECD Model Tax Convention with Commentary', OECD Publishing

Last updated on 12-02-2019