The Société Générale Decision: ECJ Assesses Dutch Withholding Tax on Dividends of Non-Resident Corporate Portfolio Investors

The levying of dividend withholding tax on foreign shareholders is a topic of great importance throughout Europe. The recent decision in Société Générale by the Court of Justice of the European Union confirms that a foreign corporate shareholder should effectively not be taxed more heavily than a comparable domestic shareholder. On balance, however, one could wonder whether the outcome in this case is not just a mere Pyrrhic victory for corporate non-resident shareholders having portfolio investments in the Netherlands.