ACC40930 Aviation Tax

Academic Year 2020/2021

This module will provide you with an insight into tax policy making, explaining why Ireland is a favourable location and major international hub for aircraft finance and leasing. The Aviation Tax module will address the key tax issues facing aircraft leasing companies, whereby students will study the tax legislation and case law within which the aviation leasing sector operates.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

Learning Outcomes:

Having completed this module students will be able to:
1. Understand and critique national and international tax policies surrounding the aviation sector.

2. Understand the impact of tax residence/ permanent establishment /taxable presence in the context of aircraft leasing.

3. Understand income tax considerations for senior executives of aircraft leasing companies

4. Explain the trading status of aircraft leasing companies drawing upon case law and revenue rulings.

5. Explain the taxation treatment of lessors and lessees and the link to their accounting treatment.

6. Critique the impact of the OECD’s Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) agenda on the aircraft leasing sector.

Indicative Module Content:

Topics we shall explore:
Week Topic
1. An Introduction to Tax, Tax Policy Making, Tax avoidance and tax evasion

2. The charge to tax: The meaning of tax residence for individuals and companies, income tax considerations for senior executives of aircraft leasing companies

3. The meaning of a trade and the trading status of aircraft leasing companies
• Badges of Trade, Revenue Rulings re trading status of aircraft leasing companies
• Income qualifying for 12.5% corporate tax rate

4. Tax depreciation / capital allowances and the aircraft leasing sector
• The meaning of plant and industrial building
• Qualifying conditions for tax depreciation – wear and tear allowances, balancing allowances and charges
• Tax depreciation for aircraft in Ireland, including MRO

5. Taxation of Lessors and Lessees
• The link between lease accounting and the taxation of leases
• The concept of deferred tax
• Disposal of leased assets – the tax treatment of gains and losses on disposal
• The tax treatment of foreign exchange transactions
• Aercap Annual Report

6. Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) and its impact on the aircraft leasing sector, Module Wrap Up.

Guest Lectures
Anna Scally, Partner KPMG: Topical Issues in the tax landscape

Joe O’Mara, Partner KPMG: Comparative international tax policies for aircraft leasing and typical ownership structures
Finance structures and related tax considerations
• Finance vehicles used – standard companies, S.110 companies
• Debt instruments used
• Securitisations

Martin McCoy, SMBC Aviation Capital (video link from Hong Kong)
Transfer tax considerations when buying and selling an aircraft
• Scope of taxes – sales taxes, capital gains taxes, stamp duties, customs duties
• Nature of interest transferring – full title, beneficial interest
• Tax treaty protection
• Tax clauses in legal agreements

Student Effort Type Hours
Small Group


Conversation Class


Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning




Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Continuous Assessment: Team Assignment Research-led teaching

Team Report, Team Presentation and Individual Reflection

Please see ‘Team Work Guidance for Students’ provided.

Throughout the Trimester n/a Standard conversion grade scale 40% No


Journal: Learning Journal
This is an individual assignment, encompassing all six topics within the module and material covered by our guest lecturers.
Please see ‘Learning Journal Guidance’ provided.
Throughout the Trimester n/a Standard conversion grade scale 40% Yes


Carry forward of passed components
Remediation Type Remediation Timing
In-Module Resit Prior to relevant Programme Exam Board
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Not yet recorded.

Reading Material:
Background Reading:
1. From Boraimhe to Bit – the Art of Taxation
Author: Moira O’Halloran
Publisher: Irish Tax Institute

2. The Economics of Taxation
Authors: Simon James and Christopher Nobes
Publisher: Prentice Hall

3. Taxation: Policy and Practice
Authors: Andy Lymer and Lynne Oats
Publisher: Fiscal Publications

Essential Reading:
4. Irish Taxation: Law and Practice, 2020/2021*
Author: Irish Tax Institute
Publisher: Irish Tax Institute

The above texts are available in the Campus Book Shop and in the Library.
• Available as an eBook.

In addition to the above, students are recommended to read current articles and
periodicals during the year, in particular:

Financial Times
Irish Tax Review
Accountancy Ireland
Business and Finance
British Tax Review
Fiscal Studies

These journals are available in the UCD library.

Most Sunday newspapers have a regular business/taxation advice section.

TAXFIND (Access Sponsored by KPMG)
TaxFind contains a comprehensive collection of tax related legislation, commentary, case law, seminars and Revenue documentation.

TaxFind login details
Username: 60680
Password: ucdtaxfind

Useful Websites for your research:

Practical Offering 1 Week(s) - 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Mon 16:00 - 16:50 Online
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 0, 2, 4 Tues 08:30 - 09:50 Blended
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - 1, 3, 5 Tues 08:30 - 09:50 Blended
Lecture Offering 2 Week(s) - 0, 3, 5 Tues 08:30 - 09:50 Blended
Lecture Offering 2 Week(s) - 1 Tues 08:30 - 09:50 Blended
Lecture Offering 2 Week(s) - 2, 4 Tues 08:30 - 09:50 Blended

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