Taiwan: Tax authorities want to improve compliance by foreign and domestic entertainers

It has been reported in international press that the Taiwanese tax authorities will take steps to enforce the collection of withholding tax due by foreign entertainers. Apparently an increasing number of foreign artists are performing in Taiwan, following successful measures of the Taiwanese government to encourage international exchange of cultural activities.

Under Taiwanese individual income tax law, payments to non-resident individuals (i.e. individuals who have not stayed 183 days or more in a taxable period in Taiwan) for services provided in Taiwan are subject to a final 20% withholding tax. The withholding tax is to be withheld by the payer, who needs to declare the gross amount paid to the non-resident individuals and who needs to forward the tax withheld to the Taiwanese tax authorities. There have apparently been instances were the amounts reported by the payers are considerably less than the amounts reported in the press.

The action plan of the Taiwanese tax authorities will apparently include the pooling of information regarding the remuneration of foreign entertainers as reported in domestic and overseas press publications, and the comparison between this information, the amounts paid elsewhere and the amounts reported by the Taiwanese payers.