Oxfam today gave a cautious welcome to the OECD's plans to open up its tax reform process to developing countries but said more fundamental global tax reforms, beyond BEPS, are still needed to stop corporate tax scandals.
In response to the latest Panama Papers leak that exposes how Africa is being deprived billions of dollars in natural resource revenues due to offshore deals, Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International, said governments are just not doing enough to stop illicit flows, tax evasion and tax avoidance.
More than 300 leading economists from 30 countries have today written to world leaders warning that there is no economic justification for allowing tax havens to continue, and urging them to bring an end to offshore financial secrecy. The letter comes ahead of the UK Government’s summit on offshore corruption in London on Thursday, which politicians from 40 countries as well as World Bank and IMF representatives are expected to attend.
This global tax platform represents a step in a long road towards building a fairer and more transparent global tax system. The platform must be able to deliver tangible results and combat inequality, but most importantly, it must give the poorest countries a voice.
At the close of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund’s Spring Meetings in Washington, Chris Stalker, Acting Head of Oxfam International’s Washington office, commented on the week's developments.
“Today’s so-called ‘hammer blow’ against tax cheats misses. If the proposed registry of beneficial owners of companies and trusts is hidden from the public, how can we know who is hiding their profits and fortunes and trying to avoid paying their fair share?" said Susana Ruiz, Oxfam's tax policy expert.
Following the abuses revealed in the Panama Papers, world leaders attending the Spring Meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund this week must seize the moment to take decisive action and help end the era of tax havens, said Oxfam today.
Fifty one of the 68 companies that were lent money by the World Bank’s private lending arm in 2015 to finance investments in sub-Saharan Africa use tax havens, Oxfam revealed today.
In an open letter, a large coalition of civil society organisations and trade unions including Oxfam, is asking European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker for a more ambitious proposal on tax transparency.
Banks in France are relying heavily on tax havens to increase their profits, according to a study based on new data that for the first time allows a proper analysis of the role that tax havens play in European business.