Tax treaty interpretation is the cornerstone for the correct application of a convention. Due to its undeniable importance it is vital to know how to approach the intricate world of tax treaty interpretation. The objective of this article is to understand the interaction between Article 31 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (VCLT) and Article 3(2) of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development Model Convention (OECDMC), the way they interact and when to apply each of them, with special reference to the concept of ‘context’ which is used in both articles. The article addresses the nature and scope of the subject of interpretation, the interpretation rule in the VCLT and in Article 3(2) of the OECDMC. It further deals with the interaction between these two sets of rules, structuring their relationship in scenarios. The conclusion provides a brief overview of the main findings together with proposals on how to deal with some issues and a final statement that pursues for the enrichment of the research on tax treaty interpretation.
There is no part of the law of treaties which the text-writer approaches with more trepidation than the question of interpretationIntertax