Misnomer between FRS12 and FRS40?

a new hotel taking shape

The second part of Tan Eng Juan/Tan Kai Guan’s article on Accounting for Deferred Tax in Sep/Oct2009 Singapore Accountant touched on the following areas:-

What if disposal of investment properties “attracts a badge of trade” ==> Consequently, gain/loss from such transactions would be subject to tax. Both professors got no issue with that.

The two professors are however unhappy with when such entities SHOULD have started accounting for deferred tax on these properties. They posit that:-
a) deferred tax should have been provided for when FRS12 was adopted in year 2001 and;
b) accounting for deferred tax should not started only year 2007 ie. the year FRS40 was adopted.

Why?

1. SAS12 to FRS12 effected on April 1, 2001
Assuming gain on disposal is taxable, SAS12, in the past, said deferred tax has to be provided for IF the timing differences affect P&Ls.
But now FRS12 said we must provide for deferred tax on ALL temporary differences, regardless or not they affect P&Ls.

2. FRS25 to FRS40 effected on January 1, 2007
Under the extinct FRS25, revaluation surplus is taken to reserve (ie. never to P&L).
Under the currently in force FRS40, fair value gain is taken to P&L.

The simple point is that while FRS12 has been in force about 6 years earlier than FRS40, have most companies been accounting for deferred tax as tax expense in P&L since 2001? The two professors seem to imply that most did not. During those 6-7 years, deferred tax on revaluation of investment property will be debited to “revaluation reserve” (instead of P&L).

Impact? – Profit figures are overstated over those years while the overall value of shareholders’ equity remain neutral.

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Director fined for lodging false data

Who did it? CSI team, pls check for finger prints and DNA.

Dear Staff of Corporate Secretarial firms, directors-wannabes and of course, Directors of companies,

Please be informed that a local director was recently fined $21,000 for changing the addresses of foreign directors to a local address, with full knowledge that the information is false.

Why did she, Ragini Dhanvantray of Rivkin Consultancy, do that for?
She is currently the local director of companies with foreign directors.
The Companies Act stipulates that every company must have at least one director ordinarily resident in Singapore.
Perhaps (I speculate here, without basis) she is thinking of quitting as local director of these companies as these foreign directors/shareholders may have gone missing and have not be meeting their obligations to her and the companies.
She came up with the idea of changing the addresses of these foreign directors and subsequently follow with her resignation as director.

Points to ponder

  1. How were these false information found out?
  2. As the Companies Act is currently under review, should the relevant authority/committee consider possible improvement to the stipulation for a local director and specify the roles and responsibilities of these directors? Less will come forward to offer themselves as local directors if these directors are constantly hauled to Court, ACRA, IRAS, creditors, customers, employees etc etc to answer queries on companies abandoned by these foreign shareholders cum directors. If less are willing to come forward, what are implications to Singapore as a business hub?

We were repeatedly reminded that you have no lesser responsibilities as a local director or a nominee director. A director is a director! Oxymoronic?

Accounting for Deferred Tax – A Mispractice

chingay 2010 colours

Tan Eng Juan and Tan Kai Guan, two Associate Professors from NTU wrote a very interesting article on “Accounting for Deferred Tax on Investment Property in Sep/Oct2009 Student Accountant.

Their paper argued that we should NOT provide for deferred tax on investment property if the gain on disposal of those properties is NOT taxable. If gain on disposal is a badge of trade ie. such gains are thus taxable, then deferred tax should be accounted for.

Their supporting arguments in favour of their position:-

a) FRS12 said deferred tax should only be accounted for if and only if “it is probable that recovery or settlement of that carrying amount will make future tax payments larger (smaller) …” ==> In the absence of capital gains tax in Singapore and if the profit/loss on disposal has no tax implication, then why are we wasting time accounting for deferred tax?

b) If fair value adjustment to asset values have no tax implications on disposal, then why are we accounting for deferred tax? We should NOT account for deferred tax for reason that the fair value adjustments are reflected in P&L and thus affect the current profitability and thus tax expense.

c) Even if higher fair value is due expected higher rental for its properties, there is still NO basis to account for deferred tax on the higher fair value. Why?
As the higher rental income for each future period would be subject to income tax and thus higher tax expense for that future period, there is thus no basis to subject changes in fair value to deferred tax.

If both these professors are correct, what are the implications for entities that had been accounting for deferred tax all these years on non-taxable gains even if they were to be realised in the future?

Budget 2010 – Productivity and Innovation Credit


It was announced in Budget 2010 that a Productivity and Innovation Credit (ie.“The Credit”) will be available for 5 years for Year of Assessment (YA) 2011 to YA 2015. The Credit will provide significant tax deductions for investments in a broad range of activities along the innovation value chain.

On such activities is investing in automation. Of course, IRAS defines “automation” as costs incurred to acquire “prescribed automation equipment” (e.g. laser printer, modem).

You would be entitled to 250% allowance for the first $300,000 of qualifying expenditure, 100% allowance for the balance expenditure.

Example: Laptop costs $2,000
Capital Allowance under the Credit = 250% x $2,000 = $5,000.

Taxpayer can either claim $5,000 as capital allowance in its tax return or opt to convert such capital allowances in respect of Laptop into a cash grant. The cash grant is computed at 7% of the capital allowance under the Credit ie. $350.

Question – Why the flexibility for you to choose to claim or to convert?
The simple answer is taxpayer should claim if it could help to save on paying 17% corporate tax and you should covert to cash if there is very little or no tax payable eg. for new company with exempt income.