Tax Justice Around the World #6 | Highlights from GATJ Members

GATJ

28 Jun 2023

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GATJ

28 Jun 2023

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In the week when the Summit for a New Global Financial Pact had representatives from all over the globe talking about a new financial pact, GATJ members took the chance to share their remarks on the summit and its main subject. In Latin America, a reminder that the path to tax justice lies in the establishment of a UN tax convention. Manifestations in Asia call out the Global North for not offering real solutions to finance the fight against multiple crises they have caused. In Europe, the summit’s legitimacy and real goals got criticised. Africa has a new project coming up. In North America, a setback in the US, and a chance for improvement in Canada. Check out all the activities and new stories:

 

Africa

 

Tax Justice Network Africa (TJNA) announced they will be hosting a podcast series about Kenya’s Double Taxation Agreements (DTAs), to raise awareness about the topic at a time when the country is developing its national tax policy.

“In the past 5 years, TJNA has sustained research and advocacy on DTAs and their impact on the domestic resource mobilisation efforts of African countries. Some of the notable works include a 2019 court victory where Kenya’s High Court voided a Kenya-Mauritius DTA and declared it unconstitutional,” TJNA pointed out.

Read more about the podcast and listen to a preview on TJNA’s website

 

Latin America

 

Latindadd released an article about the next steps to start an intergovernmental tax process at the UN. They highlighted some of the points brought up by Tove Maria Ryding, from Eurodad, in a discussion organised in partnership with Red de Justicia Fiscal de América Latina y el Caribe (RJFALC) for their members. Read the full article here.

RJFALC has opened registrations for a second edition of a free online course about fiscal citizenship, promoted with Inesc and Instituto Justiça Fiscal, in Brazil. Classes are given by tax scholars and professionals from Brazil and Latin America. Subscriptions are open until 28 June, and classes start on 1 July. Learn more:

 

Asia

 

During the Paris Summit for a New Global Financial Pact, the Asian Peoples’ Movement on Debt and Development (APMDD) organised mobilisations in many Asian countries, demanding reparations and calling out Global North countries participating in the Summit on their responsibility towards the Global South.

Activists in the Philippines carried pictures of G7 leaders as a reminder that their countries are the main responsible for the multiple crises faced by people and communities in the Global South and to reject the loans and other false finance solutions they frequently propose.

They called for wealth tax and underlined that “the elites, despite being few, are responsible for more GHG [greenhouse gases] emissions than the combined emissions of the world’s bottom half of socio-economic classes”. India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Sri Lanka also participated in the mobilisation. Check them all out here:

 

Europe

 

Eurodad released an analysis on the Paris Summit for a New Global Financial Pact, promoted by French president Emmanuel Macron. In line with the statement of the Civil Society Financing for Development Mechanism, Eurodad highlights that the summit fell far short of the policies needed to address the global debt crisis, the climate emergency, poverty and inequality – issues which can only be addressed in a fair and inclusive manner in the United Nations, and not in Paris.

“The sad fact is that this summit has not delivered anything new and has not led to a global pact. It was full of ‘announcements’ that amounted to a push for the further financialisation of development and climate action, and that do next to nothing for the current debt crisis,” said Iolanda Fresnillo, policy and advocacy manager at Eurodad, who attended the summit.

She classified the organisation of the summit as “chaotic” and “far from inclusive” for Global South countries. The Eurodad representative also criticised the fact that the discussions ended up serving as a distraction from the real efforts that should be made, namely the establishment of a UN tax convention.

Learn more about Eurodad’s concerns on the full analysis on their website.

 

North America 

 

The Financial Accountability & Corporate Transparency (FACT) Coalition released a new statement from its government affairs director, Erica Hanichak, about a new bill that would cut funding for the United States’ primary financial intelligence unit, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).

“For years, our nation’s financial crime fighters have been financially outgunned by foreign and domestic criminals, corrupt oligarchs, and sanctions evaders looking to stash the proceeds of their crimes in the U.S. financial system. FinCEN simply has too many important projects on its plate (…) for lawmakers to be considering cuts at this critical junction,” she commented.

The full statement can be found here.

 

Canadians for Tax Fairness (C4TF) shared more details on the report released by the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-food, which acknowledges that food inflation in the country is partly caused by higher than normal profits and signals that an excess profit tax may be an option to address this issue.

“The question of who gets to pass along higher costs, who has to absorb higher costs, and who gets to pass along more than higher costs is one of power and redistribution. Currently, some of Canada’s biggest corporations have a lot of pricing power. Unsurprisingly, they are taking advantage of it, to the detriment of Canadians,” said C4TF’s economist DT Cochrane.

Check the full story on C4TF’s website.

 

Photo: APMDD

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