On the week of November 5th, which marked the one-year anniversary of the release of the #ParadisePapers, organisations from every region around the world joined together to demand that our governments respond to #ParadisePapers by Making Multinationals Pay Their Share of Tax. The Global Alliance for Tax Justice’s Global Days of Action provided an umbrella for diverse activities to increase public pressure on governments around the world to end large-scale corporate tax dodging.
Ahead of the Week of action, the Asian Peoples’ Movement on Debt and Development (APMDD) and TAFJA (Tax & Fiscal Justice Asia) had jointly released a joint statement calling for the end of corporate tax abuses and progressive tax systems that benefit the poor rather than the rich. The joint statement, titled “Corporations and wealthy elites: running out of places to hide” is available here and on TAFJA’s Facebook page
Several regional and national members also issued press releases on Nov 5th, e.g. Tax Justice Network Africa (TJNA) – urging “Governments to commit to ensuring that the increased revenue will be spent on quality public services for all, combating inequality, empowering women and taking action to solve the climate crisis”.
In Latin America, Red de Justicia Fiscal complemented its posts with some #ParadisePapers highlights:
Red de Justicia Fiscal also co-edited with ALAI “Tax Reforms in Latin America and the Caribbean” (“Reformas Fiscales en América Latina y el Caribe”) with contributions about the region and more specifically Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Paraguay and Peru.
In North America, the US network FACT Coalition recalled in its blog article that at the same time the #ParadisePapers leaks detailed a number of tax avoidance techniques used by the wealthy and multinational corporations to avoid taxes, Congress was rushing to pass the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. “In light of the Paradise Papers revelations, we encouraged lawmakers to carefully review the information from the leak and consider whether their overhaul would address the tax dodging practices exposed. They chose not to do so. (…) Aggressive corporate tax avoidance is harmful but it is not inevitable. It is the result of conscious policy choices. That is why we are joining with our colleagues around the world this week to mark the Global Week of Action to Make Multinationals Pay Their Share.”
Eurodad’s press release, titled “One year since Paradise Papers – EU has taken some action, but more must be done to end tax dodging”, quotes Tove Maria Ryding, Tax Coordinator at Eurodad and member of the GATJ Coordinating Committee: “One year on, we’re still far from the point where the problems in our tax system have been fixed. Globally, corporate tax avoidance is costing countries an estimated US$500 billion per year. (…) At the EU level, we have seen some action to prevent wealthy individuals from hiding their wealth and evading tax. We welcome the EU’s decision to stop anonymous shell companies by introducing public registers showing who owns companies in the EU. Unfortunately, we have not seen the same progress when it comes to making multinational corporations pay their share of tax. Instead, EU governments have been deadlocked in internal disagreement, and there has been a lack of political will to move forward. (…) Furthermore, several EU countries continue to behave like tax havens, including for example the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Ireland and Malta. (…) There is no time to waste. Tax justice is necessary to finance development and fight inequality. This includes gender inequality. When public services fail, women often carry the heaviest load, and step into unpaid care work to compensate for the shortfall. Therefore, tax justice is vital for ensuring gender equality and empowerment of women”.
Tove Maria Ryding also seized the opportunity to mention the poor European debate on tax issues:
Our partner AWID used the anniversary to refocus on the 7 reasons why we need #TaxJustice for #WomensRights, which is a major campaign issue for the Global Alliance for Tax Justice:
See more about the Global Days of Action “#ParadisePapers: One Year On” on our campaign page!