Regulatory Instruments for Double or Multiple Taxation

April 2, 2024

Nowadays, double or multiple taxation has become an increasingly relevant issue in an interconnected world where commercial and financial transactions easily cross-national borders. For this challenge, countries have established several regulatory instruments designed to prevent taxpayers from being taxed twice or more for the same income or assets. Herein, we will address the main regulatory instruments used to avoid double or multiple taxation and their significance in the international taxation context. 

Double Taxation Agreements  

Double taxation agreements are bilateral or multilateral arrangements entered into between two or more countries to eliminate double taxation on the same income or assets. These arrangements establish clear rules to determine in which country the different types of income and assets should be taxed to avoid double taxation and promote tax cooperation between the signatory countries. 

Information Exchange Agreements  

Information exchange agreements are legal instruments through which countries agree to share tax information with other countries to prevent tax evasion and fight tax fraud. These agreements enable tax authorities to access relevant information on taxpayers with assets or income abroad, which facilitates the enforcement of tax laws and contributes to tax transparency internationally. 

European Union Directives  

In the EU context, specific directives have been established to address double taxation in the direct tax field. These directives, such as the Corporate Taxation Directive, mainly target tax restrictions among Member States and ensure fair taxation for companies operating in the European single market. 

OECD Models  

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has developed several tax agreement models as a reference for countries in the negotiation of double tax agreements. These models, such as the OECD Model Double Taxation Agreement for Income and Wealth, establish standard provisions for the taxation of income and assets at the international level, thus promoting the consistency and effectiveness of tax arrangements. 


Regulatory instruments play a crucial role in international taxation, ensuring fair taxation and preventing tax evasion in an increasingly globalized environment. Double tax agreements, exchange of information agreements, EU directives, and OECD models are some examples of these instruments, reflecting the commitment of countries to tax cooperation and tax transparency at the international level. 

In short, these regulatory instruments are essential to promote fair and efficient taxation in the current global context, thus facilitating international trade and sustainable economic growth.