India not at risk of losing 2021 World Cup over tax immunity

Updated May 29 2020


BCCI was supposed to confirm they had secured tax exemptions by May 18. — AFP/File
BCCI was supposed to confirm they had secured tax exemptions by May 18. — AFP/File

NEW DELHI: India is not at risk of losing hosting rights for next year’s ICC Twenty20 World Cup despite its cricket board’s failure to secure a tax exemption for the event, a key BCCI official has said.

Tax exemptions for International Cricket Council (ICC) events are listed as a requirement in host agreements and the BCCI was supposed to confirm they had secured one by May 18.

ESPNcricinfo, citing correspondence between the two bodies, has reported that the ICC has threatened to shift the tournament away from India over the issue.

However, BCCI treasurer Arun Singh Dhumal says that would not happen and that negotiations were continuing.

“There is no risk to the tournament,” he said. “That is a work in progress. We are discussing it with the ICC and we’ll resolve it.”

The BCCI encountered a similar problem when it hosted the event in 2016 when the government refused to provide a tax exemption, and there has been no change in New Delhi’s stance despite the board’s appeals.

Failure to secure that exemption in 2016 saw the ICC withhold an equivalent sum from India’s share of revenue from the governing body’s grants and it appears to be taking an even harder line this time around.

“There are certain timelines within the agreements that we collectively work towards to ensure we can deliver successful world class events and continue to invest in the sport of cricket,” an ICC spokesperson said. “In addition to this the ICC Board agreed clear timelines for the resolution of the tax issues which we are guided by.”

Published in Dawn, May 29th, 2020