Final Word from Tuesday, March 21, 2017

By now almost everyone knows what a tax haven is, but not everyone is up to speed on conduit tax havens. These are jurisdictions such as Luxembourg and the Netherlands that act as intermediate stops for converting income, limiting withholding taxes or managing intellectual property. Even Andrej Babiš, who snipes at Czech byznysmeni who have their seats in Cyprus, had a Dutch holding company. In a similar way, Ukraine, Vietnam and Mongolia have become cheap-labor havens that offer a way for Czech companies to avoid - or even evade - the rising wages at home. Poland is the favored conduit for this, allowing Ukrainians to be converted to legal cross-border employees. Or maybe illegal, depending on how the immigration police decide to treat a specific company. As with tax evasion, labor-cost evasion is very much in the eye of the beholder. Now that ČSSD has decided to crack down on illegal labor, we'll see how consistent it is in enforcing the rules. [Czech Republic employment recruitment agencies agency]

Glossary of difficult words

conduit - a channel for conveying water or other fluid; a person or organization that acts as a channel for the transmission of something;

up to speed - fully informed or up to date;

to snipe - to make a sly or petty verbal attack;

in the eye of the beholder - meaning that each person has his or her idea about how to perceive something.

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