For over 20 years Rustem has been providing tax advice and has represented taxpayers many times in the Russian Constitutional Court, Russian Supreme Commercial (‘Arbitration’) Court, Russian Supreme Court and state commercial courts.
Rustem's professional interests include international taxation and the application of legislation concerning controlled foreign companies (CFCs).
His major projects include:
- Participated in preparing draft laws, particularly amendments to legislation connected with holding the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi in 2014;
- Participated in and managed two projects which involved the analysis and assessment of the tax base for a Russian state-owned holding company based on the legislation regarding controlled foreign companies (over 90 potential CFCs);
- Represented Far-Eastern Shipping Company in the Russian Constitutional Court in its appeal of the provisions of article 165 of the Russian Tax Code;
- Defended Total in the Supreme Commercial Court in a case on a PSA operator’s right to a refund of VAT;
- Defended JTI in the Supreme Commercial Court in a case on whether intra-group expenses for licence payments were justified.
Rustem has regularly been involved in consulting projects dealing with taxation issues for foreign companies and their subsidiaries in Russia, as well as applying the rules of international double taxation treaties, and restructuring international holding groups to take into consideration legislative requirements concerning CFCs.
Prominent international directories of law firms (Chambers Europe, The Legal 500, Tax Directors Handbook, Tax Controversy Leaders, Indirect Tax Leaders, and Best Lawyers) have rated him as among the leading experts in tax law in Russia.
Successfully represented companies with regard to the beneficial ownership of income (the cases of Commercial Bank Moskommertsbank (2014-15), CJSC Votek Mobile (2015-16), OJSC Saint Petersburg Telecom (2016)).
He regularly speaks at conferences and seminars dedicated to international taxation and, in particular, beneficial ownership of income and CFCs:
- Passive payments in the operations of a holding company. News, and challenges faced by a beneficial owner of income (Finance and Taxes Congress, 24 April 2017)
- Beneficial owner of income: principal errors foreigners make in Russia (AEB Conference, 1 March 2017)
- Beneficial owner of income. News and developing practice (a seminar for Pepeliaev Group’s clients, 20 February 2017)
- Russia-specific aspects of the BEPS Plan (Tax Forum at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, 30 November 2016)
- Business restructuring. Pitfalls you ought to be aware of in advance (Ninth annual conference: International tax planning, 17 November 2016)
- Who is a ‘beneficial owner of income’, or how to quickly and relatively legally replenish the Russian state budget (a seminar for clients of SDM Bank, 16 November 2016)
He has authored numerous articles on international taxation, specifically:
- Taxation of international structures: comments from the Russian Finance Ministry’s draft law, or What does the coming year have in store? (Nalogoved, Issue 10, 2014)
- Thin capitalisation: the results of year 2013, or How gaps in the law are compensated by the careless treatment of legal rules (Nalogoved, Issue 3, 2014)
- Is this a tax benefit for a foreign investor, or discrimination against Russian enterprises? (Nalogoved, Issue 1, 2017)
- Taxes In 2014: Attention On Cross-Border Transactions (Moscow Times, 03.02.17)
- Tax residency of legal entities: what is it? (Zakon, 17 February 2014)
- Tax relationships with a ‘foreign element’: How to avoid unnecessary problems (Legal Insight, 5 October 2015)
He is a co-author of the Tax Law textbook edited by Sergey Pepeliaev (2000, 2003 and 2015 editions).
What they say:
Every year Rustem is recommended as one of the leading Russian tax lawyers by all reputable international rankings, including Chambers, The Legal 500 and Best Lawyers, as well as Russian publications, such as Pravo.ru and Kommersant.
Clients describe Rustem as “a well-known local expert with strong experience on the Russian market who always delivers what we need” (Chambers Europe).
“Rustem Ahmetshin acts on tax litigation mandates, particularly those with cross-border aspects” (Chambers Global).