The 1993 SNA specifies that units conducting only a specified list of activities designated as "ancillary" should not be treated as separate units but their costs should be consolidated with the units they serve. This means that when accounts for a region are compiled, head offices and other ancillary units located there are excluded if the units they serve are located outside the region. This results in a difference between ancillary units located abroad, which are treated as separate units, and those that are resident but distant from their related enterprises. Should the principle of not treating ancillary units as separate units be changed and what are the consequences throughout the accounts?
As part of the innovation in financial markets and asset management over the last decade, several forms of separate entities have come into existence that only hold assets or liabilities but do not engage in production. Such entities are separate new or existing legal structures assigned for specific purposes such as specialized portfolio management of assets and debts, restructuring agencies, special purpose entities, shell companies, limited liability partnerships or trusts. Should these entities be treated as ancillary and merged with their related enterprises, or should they be treated as separate units? If they are separate units, to which sector should they be allocated?
The 1993 SNA follows the Balance of Payments Manual in allowing for a single enterprise run as a seamless entity with substantial operations in two or more economic territories to be regarded as having a centre of economic interest in each of the countries where it is recognized by the tax and licensing authorities, but only when the activity is operating mobile equipment such as ships, aircraft and railways. In these cases, the possibility is for all the enterprise's transactions to be allocated to the countries of registry in proportion to the financial capital that the countries have contributed or their share of equity in the enterprise. Should this treatment be extended to other activities, for example hydro-electric schemes on border rivers and pipelines? Should reference be made to joint sovereignty zones and zones of joint jurisdiction?
The Balance of Payments Manual (BPM) indicates that establishments of enterprises located in a country different from the country of residence of the parent should be treated as notional units, resident in the country where located under certain conditions. The SNA discusses non-resident unincorporated enterprises rather than establishments. Should the SNA and BPM be more closely aligned?
Is special treatment required for non-resident units established abroad by government for fiscal purposes?