Osgoode professor’s book offers insight into Chinese tax law

Professor Jinyan Li of York University’s Osgoode Hall Law School has published a new book about Chinese tax law that will appeal to corporations engaged in cross-border transactions with China as well as taxpayers, tax professionals and policymakers worldwide who need to understand Chinese international tax policy and practice.

Jinyan Li
Jinyan Li

The book, entitled International Taxation in China: A Contextualized Analysis (IBFD, 2016), deals with the Chinese international tax regime, focusing on the Enterprise Income Tax Law of the People’s Republic of China and tax treaties.

It covers standard topics such as inbound and outbound rules, withholding taxes, transfer pricing, tax avoidance, and base erosion and profit shifting. It then sets forth technical tax rules in their specific Chinese legal and institutional context, for example, the approach of Chinese courts to the interpretation and application of tax law and the crucial role played by the State Administration of Taxation, which are significantly different from the role of their counterparts in Western countries.

“I have sought to shed light on the Chinese way of thinking about international taxation,” said Li who uses examples, tables and detailed footnotes throughout her book to explain the rules in the legislation and the law in practice.

In his preface to the book, Brian J. Arnold, a senior advisor at the Canadian Tax Foundation, describes the book as “a mature work by a scholar at the top of her game” and says it is rewarding on several levels.

“For anyone with a professional need to understand Chinese international tax policy and practice, the book should be your ‘go-to’ source,” Arnold says.

Li has been a member of the Osgoode Hall Law School faculty since 1999. She is currently co-director of its LLM (Tax) program and director of the LLM (International Business Law) program. She also teaches tax courses in the JD program. Her research interests include Canadian and international tax law and policy, comparative tax law and Chinese law.

Li has received numerous research grants over the years, and has produced more than 40 books and book chapters, journal articles and commissioned expert reports. She is one of a group of external experts currently engaged by Department of Finance Canada to provide advice in the review of federal tax expenditures that it is leading. She has served as a member of an advisory committee for Canada’s Minister of National Revenue on the issue of e-commerce taxation and a member of the Transfer Pricing Subcommittee of the Advisory Panel on Canada’s International Taxation. She is also a former Governor of the Canadian Tax Foundation.