The inaugural joint meeting of the OECD’s Committees on Fiscal Affairs and Development Assistance could result in a transformation of the global agenda on tax cooperation and transparency.
Martin Hearson, Tax Policy Analyst at ActionAid said from the Paris meeting: “The decisions taken during the last two days at the OECD could pave the way for a radical shakeup in the fight against tax havens. This will finally deliver benefits to developing countries as well the G20. International leadership from the UK government has been vital to securing this progress.”
The OECD plans to add a country by country reporting standard to its guidelines for multinational companies, by the end of 2010.
Martin Hearson continued: “Country by country reporting is no longer just an idea on paper. Today’s announcements mean that it is likely to be recognised as international best practice by the end of 2010. This is a critical development. ”
Some multinationals have already begun to prepare their financial systems to collect country by country tax information. ActionAid says the next step should be for this voluntary measure to become a mandatory International Financial Reporting Standard.
The UK has also committed to signing a multilateral Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) with developing countries by the end of this year and has called for other major economies to do the same.
Martin Hearson said; “This is the natural progression in the international campaign against tax havens. The long term success of this agreement will depend on the ability of developing countries to fully participate, and the engagement of major economic powers and secrecy jurisdictions.”
photo : ©Kristian Buus/ActionAid