G20 nations commit to action against tax dodging
This article was first published in Taxation, 12 September 2013
International action must be taken against tax avoidance and evasion, the heads of the G20 nations have agreed.
The decision was made at last week’s summit in Saint Petersburg, where a range of tax-related issues was discussed, including avoidance by multinational companies, information exchange and the need to work with developing countries to bolster their ability to collect tax due.
Keith O’Donnell, a board member of Taxand, claimed the Saint Petersburg proposals left “substantial questions… over the nature of the BEPS initiative and its outcomes”.
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Perhaps the most fundamental question is about who will be driving the reform, particularly if it is to be a truly global project. A number of the G20 constituents, including large, developing economies such as Argentina, China and Brazil, are not members of the OECD. There is therefore substantial risk that the OECD will lack the firepower to harness and control the G20 on this issue and implementation will undoubtedly be a nightmare issue further down the line.