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Bunge arm told to pay extra tax
January, 27th 2009

US-based edible oil seller Bunges Indian arm has been asked by income tax authorities to pay additional taxes on its Rs 550-crore
income, and the company may also face penalty for concealment of income.

The income tax department, which recently passed the assessment order on the company, said it had also altered the audited financials for preparing the transfer pricing report (TPR), prepared to ascertain the international income of the company. In the transfer pricing report, the company had altered the audited financials by removing the purchase and sale amount from their trading account, said a tax official with knowledge of the case.

Price Waterhouse is the financial advisor to the firm and represented the company before the tax officials in India. Going by the order of the assessing officer and the transfer pricing officer concerned, it is understood that the TPR was also prepared by PwC. However, when asked about the preparation of the transfer pricing report, PwC said it had not prepared the report for Bunge India.

For the transfer pricing purposes, the company had amended the audited accounts by excluding the cost of purchase for calculating the operating cost of merchanting activity.

The assessee (Bunge India) is not entitled to amend the basic structure of audited financials, pointed out the income tax department while passing an order on the issue.

Bunge Indiawhich has filed an appeal with higher authorities in this regard,chose not to reply to any query.
relating to the company.

Bunge group is an integrated global agribusiness and food company operating in the farm-to-consumer food chain. It is the worlds largest seller of bottled vegetable oil, the top supplier of edible oil in North America, largest producer and supplier of fertilisers in South America and leading producer of soybean and oilseed products.

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