Vodafone chief Analjit Singh, on Thursday, said the telecom giant proposed to initiate pre-conciliation talks with the government to settle the Rs.11,200-crore tax dispute.
“Yes, the pre-conciliation talks will start,’’ Mr. Singh told reporters after meeting Finance Minister P. Chidambaram.
While Vodafone has selected its senior official Mathew Kirk, the government has nominated Law Secretary P. K. Malhotra to represent it to start the pre-conciliation talks.
The British telecom major is facing a tax liability of over Rs.11,200 crore, along with interest, on its 2007 acquisition of Hutchison Whampoa’s stake in Hutchison Essar.
While the British telecom major has indicated its preference for conciliation under the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law , India has proposed settlement under the Indian Arbitration and Conciliation Act.
Earlier also, Vodafone had expressed its keenness to reach an amicable settlement on the matter.
Although the government and Vodafone agree on conciliation process for settling the dispute, t there are differences on the issue of under what rules it should be done.
The Supreme Court last year had ruled in Vodafone’s favour, saying the British company was not liable to pay any tax over its 2007 acquisition of mobile phone assets in India.