China is likely to be preferred to India as an investment destination in the next one year, marking the reversal from last year's trend when the two BRIC nations were found to be equally attractive for investments, says a survey.
Consultancy major Ernst & Young's global M&A tax survey and trends has revealed that fortunes are changing in the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China) countries.
"In 2011, China, India and Brazil were all listed as equally likely destinations for investment in the next 12 months," E&Y said.
According to the report, this year, China is expected to be the most popular investment location, with 28 per cent of tax directors considering it likely that they would do a deal there in the next 12 months.
"Only 21 per cent say the same for Brazil and India," it added.
E&Y said about 48 per cent of tax directors expected to be involved in a deal in a BRIC country within next 12 months whereas the same was at 54 per cent in 2011.
The findings are based on a survey of global tax directors at 150 multinational companies spread across 14 major markets. Two-thirds of the firms had revenues of over USD 5 billion.
Meanwhile, the report said that global tax directors at the world's largest companies have increased their efforts to find value through tax efficiencies as part of M&A process.
Around 54 per cent of global companies are placing more importance on tax issues in deals than three years ago.
Further, about 84 per cent of the respondents said they had increased their focus on finding tax efficiencies to reduce the costs of deals or improve returns on them.
"Our survey reveals that the heightened interest in M&A activity by tax administrators is closely related to a rise in tax legislation around the world affecting M&As...," E&Y Partner and Transaction Tax Leader Amrish Shah said.
"As a concomitant of the complex and sometimes tumultuous tax regime and in line with the global trend, India is also seeing a definitive focus on tax early in the transaction life cycle," he added.