VANCOUVER, British Columbia, July 7, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
Silver Wheaton Corp. ("Silver Wheaton" or the "Company") (TSX:SLW) (NYSE: SLW) announces that it has received a proposal letter dated July 6, 2015 (the "Proposal") from the Canada Revenue Agency (the "CRA") in which the CRA is proposing to reassess Silver Wheaton under various rules contained in the Income Tax Act (Canada).
The Proposal outlines CRA's position that the transfer pricing provisions of the Income Tax Act (Canada) relating to income earned by our foreign subsidiaries outside of Canada should apply such that the income of Silver Wheaton subject to tax in Canada should be increased for the 2005 to 2010 taxation years (the "Relevant Taxation Years") by approximately Cdn$715 million (US$567 million). The issuance of the Proposal does not require the Company to pay any amount to the CRA at this time.
Management believes that the Company has filed its tax returns and paid applicable taxes in compliance with Canadian tax law. Silver Wheaton intends to vigorously defend its tax filing positions and is now in the process of preparing its response to the Proposal.
"We remain confident in our business structure which we believe is consistent with that typically used by Canadian companies, including Canadian streaming companies, that have international operations," said Randy Smallwood, President and Chief Executive Officer of Silver Wheaton.
"Generally a company is taxable in Canada on its income earned in Canada, while non-Canadian income earned by foreign subsidiaries is not subject to Canadian income tax. However, with this Proposal, the CRA is seeking to tax, within Canada, streaming income earned outside of Canada by our foreign subsidiaries related to mines located outside of Canada," added Smallwood.
Failing a resolution at the Proposal stage, the CRA may proceed to issue notices of reassessment for one or more of the Relevant Taxation Years. If the CRA reassesses Silver Wheaton on the basis outlined in the Proposal, and assuming that Silver Wheaton would be assessed taxes on the foreign subsidiaries' income on the same basis as its Canadian income, Silver Wheaton currently estimates on a preliminary basis that it would be subject to federal and provincial tax of approximately US$150 million in respect of the Relevant Taxation Years. The Proposal also indicates that the CRA is seeking to apply transfer pricing penalties of approximately Cdn$72 million (US$57 million) in respect of the Relevant Taxation Years. The Proposal does not indicate the amount of interest or other penalties in respect of the Relevant Taxation Years. Further, taxation years subsequent to 2010 remain open to audit by the CRA.
Should Silver Wheaton receive a notice of reassessment from the CRA based upon the Proposal, we intend to file a notice of objection within the required 90 day period provided under the Income Tax Act (Canada). In such a circumstance, Silver Wheaton would be required to pay 50% of the reassessed amount of tax, interest and penalties. This amount, plus interest, would be refunded if the Company were ultimately successful in challenging a reassessment. Any notice of objection would be reviewed by the CRA's Appeals Division. Silver Wheaton also has the right to appeal directly to the Tax Court of Canada 91 days after the date of filing of any notice of objection.
The timing for the Proposal process, the CRA appeals process and/or court process (if necessary following the issuance by CRA of any notices of reassessment), is uncertain. Regardless of the timing, Silver Wheaton intends to vigorously defend its tax filing positions.
PLEASE REFER TO THE ATTACHED Q&A FOR FURTHER DETAILS ON THE PROPOSAL LETTER.
Conference Call Details
A conference call will be held July 7, 2015, starting at 11:00am (Eastern Time) to discuss the contents of this news release. To participate in the live call, please use one of the following methods:
Dial toll free from Canada or the US: 888-231-8191 Dial from outside Canada or the US: 647-427-7450 Pass code: 80922107 Live audio webcast: www.silverwheaton.com
Participants should dial in five to ten minutes before the call.
The conference call will be recorded and available until July 14, 2015. The webcast will be available for one year. You can listen to an archive of the call by one of the following methods:
SOURCE Silver Wheaton Corp.