Aug 24 (Reuters) - A U.S. appeals court said on Wednesday that Puerto Rico could not force Wal-Mart Stores Inc’s affiliate there to pay a special corporate tax that the retailer said was discriminatory and violated the U.S. Constitution.
The 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston upheld a lower court order blocking the U.S. territory from imposing its alternative minimum tax against Wal-Mart Puerto Rico Inc.
The appeals court called the tax “facially discriminatory,” saying it taxed only cross-border transactions between a Puerto Rico corporate taxpayer and a related entity located elsewhere.
It said that did not meet the extra level of scrutiny needed to survive under the “dormant” Commerce Clause.
Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Peter Cooney