International Tax Evasion: World Officials Brainstorm On Fighting Scourge

The finance experts from over 140 countries are elaborating measures to enhance information exchange for tax purposes in order to effectively tackle illicit financial flow.

Finance officials are meeting in Yaounde to elaborate measures to enhance information exchange for tax purposes. The taxation stakeholders, who are bent on effectively tackling illicit financial flow across the world, are gathered under the canopy of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes.

While officially opening the 10th plenary meeting of the Global Forum, Cameroon’s Minister of Finance, Alamine Ousmane Mey lauded the participating delegates for their commitment in combating the scourge which deprives States of millions of development money.

According to the Minister of Finance, “we have witnessed in the past fifteen years a situation which is impacting negatively our countries…We need to collect more domestic revenue.” Alamine Ousmane Mey told Cameroon Tribune they have implemented special entities in charge of monitoring exchanges between Cameroon and the rest of the world.

To Josée Maria Garde, Chair of the Global Forum, international tax evasion has been top on the agenda of political leaders, who continue to underscore the need to battle the menace. She noted that the African continent was particularly being hit hard by the global malpractice.

After the opening yesterday of the Global Forum which ends on Friday November 17, 2017, a high-level panel meeting of African Ministers of Finance was held. The panel discussion focused on: “Fighting illicit flows through international tax cooperation: A call for action in Africa.”

Going by officials, the Global Forum is the multilateral framework within which work in the area of tax transparency and exchange of information is carried out by over 140 jurisdictions, which participate on an equal footing. The Forum, which is an offshoot of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, OECD, has set new standards for information exchange.

The ongoing plenary seeks to encourage the development of tax compliance through joint/targeted audit procedures as well as promote the  fight against international tax evasion and fraud orchestrated by multinational companies which transfer profits to jurisdictions with zero or low taxation. It is coming after the publication of the Panama Papers and the Paradise Papers.

Cameroon became a member of the Global Forum in 2012. The country has undergone a peer review with respect to the implementation of set standards. The country received a “Largely Complaint” rating in 2016.

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