Friday, February 18, 2011

Links Feb 18

In the Public Interest: A (Non) Taxing Issue Huffington Post
Feb 15 - Nicole Tichon of Tax Justice Network USA blogs on the impact of President Obama's budget released this week, the deception of big-corporate and their tax dodging, on protest, and on work to be done.

Swiss support Sudan in setting up central bank
Swiss Info
Feb 18 - The Swiss are helping decision-makers from South Sudan - which has just voted to split from the north - to build up a central bank. Representatives of the soon to be sovereign country and Swiss specialists have met in Zurich for a three-day workshop. We wonder just how the members of that particular forum were decided upon.

Development aid: Enemy of emancipation? Pambazuka News
Feb 17 - Criticism of the ‘aid industry’. Though tax is not mentioned specifically here, accountability by government to citizens is an important thread. Tax justice, mobilisation of domestic resources, provides for this route.

Mubarak family takes advantage of bank secrecy in Panama
Public Citizen
Feb 14 - A Mubarak-owned property with ownership trail vanishing into secrecy layering via a Panamian company. And a fig-leaf Tax Information Exchange Agreement with the U.S.

Probe sought in Egypt of Mubarak family finances
Washington Post
Feb 17 - Anti-corruption campaigners pressed Egypt's chief prosecutor Thursday for an investigation into the assets of Hosni Mubarak and his family. At the center of the activists' complaint are records that raise questions about offshore companies and funds based or registered in Cyprus, the Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands and the Cayman Islands.

Can Egypt Recoup Mubarak's Fortune
The Take Away
Feb 15 - Crucial insights - an interview with Nicholas Shaxson, author of Treasure Islands.

G20: India to press for transparency in tax haven functioning Hindustan Times
Feb 18 - Facing flak at home over black money stashed abroad, India will press for transparency in the functioning of tax havens at the G20 Finance Ministers meeting in Paris on Friday to unearth "ill-gotten" money lying in such sovereign jurisdictions.

Govt okays agreements with tax havens Guernsey, Isle of Man
Prague Daily Monitor
Feb 16 - "The Czech government Wednesday approved draft agreements about exchange of information with tax havens on the islands of Guernsey and the Isle of Man. Prime Minister Petr Necas (Civic Democrats, ODS) said at a press conference after the government meeting Wednesday. The agreements will enable the Czech Republic to check whether Czech companies duly tax their incomes and assets in tax havens, Necas said." Hardly. Beware the fig-leaf. This is what is needed.

China Debuts at Top of International Education Rankings
- abc news
Dec 7 - Observing this report on how the U.S. continues to lag behind other developed countries, possibly the U.S. might think of education spending as an alternative to tax cuts for the rich.

Power to the Egyptian people
The Guardian
Feb 14 - Cartoon, observing, comparing, contrasting, with UK tax dodgers hiding money in Switzerland

UK Uncut targets banks as copycat group forms in America
The Guardian
Feb 18 - Anti-tax avoidance organisation aims to bring 30 Barclays branches to a standstill while US Uncut plans own demonstrations.

Corporate events: the horror of canapes and joyless boozing
The Guardian
Feb 18 - Corporate hypocrisy in its prime. Including: "Offshore Law Firm of the Year". Yes, too awfully true. The abuse happening not only in pain sight, but opulently celebrated.

Brussels attacks rules on tax avoidance
Financial Times
Feb 17 - The UK's Revenue & Customs’ main weapon for stopping offshore tax avoidance is under attack from Brussels, which says rules that stop investors moving their wealth abroad impinge on fundamental principles of the single market.


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