Monday, January 23, 2012

Links Jan 23

Africa losing Billions in Tax Evasion Eurodad
Jan 23 - See the video: Africa losing Billions in Tax Evasion’ based on a report by Eurodad members Forum SydBringing the billions back: how Africa and Europe can end illicit capital flight” talking about transfer mispricing, with Attiya Waris, TJN vice-chair.

New report on tax havens: the case of Luxembourg and impacts on development Eurodad

Jan 7 - "Eurodad member ASTM and other Luxembourg groups within the Cercle de Coopération au Développement have released a new report on the role of Luxemburg as a tax haven and its development implications ... The full report (only in German) and the summary report (in English and French) can be downloaded here"

France: Surprise plan of Finance Ministry to combat tax evasion Les Echos (In French)
Jan 22 - "New measures against tax evasion will be included in the supplementary budget in February. Bercy will confiscate approximately 5% of assets hidden in foreign accounts and greatly increase the penalties for criminal offenses in a tax haven." Welcome developments - and we ask why the UK doesn't get serious on offshore accounts, maybe it's something to do with this.

City of London Corporation: tax havens a ‘core asset’ for the City Treasure Islands
Jan 22 - Nick Shaxson on a communiqué from the government of the Isle of Man ..."Indeed, just exactly as I have always been saying. Tax havens as gigantic, secrecy-suffused offshore conduits to the City of London."

How the bosses paid less tax than their cleaners Daily Mail
Jan 21 - "Multi-million-pound payouts became common in private equity during the boom years. But they are not taxed as income because they represent a rise in the capital value of the fund and are taxed as capital gains. Hat tip: Offshore Watch

Romney’s spox says Cayman isn’t a tax haven. If she believes it, I have a bridge to sell her Treasure Islands
Jan 20 - "They all deny it, because the term ‘tax haven’ conjures up all sorts of really bad images. And rightly so. Read Treasure Islands, and you’ll be left in no doubt as to just how bad it all is."

See also:
Romney’s in deep trouble in Cayman – and he’s not alone Tax Research UK

Jan 23 - Richard Murphy observes: "With the Primary race set to drag on long into the Spring, this renewed scrutiny of his tax affairs is the last thing Romney needs; with Romney’s team even denying the Cayman Islands are a tax haven and more scrutiny of how the murky offshore world works, tax could become a recurring problem for Team Romney."

See also:
More on Mitt Romney's Tax Returns TaxProf

Jan 20 - Nice reference source with a set of links on the Mitt Romney tax dodging shennanigans and implications.

Honey, they shrunk the IRS Reuters
Jan 17 - David Cay Johnston comments: "Congress will spend a trillion dollars more than it levies this year, so how do Washington’s politicians respond to the 11th consecutive year of federal budgets in red ink? They plan to shrink the IRS."

More About Corporate Taxes And The .01 Percent New York Times

Jan 20 - "When people raise questions about big tax cuts for corporations, we’re told not to worry, because corporate taxes mainly fall on labor, not on stockholders. When people raise questions about low taxes on the very rich, we’re told not to worry because once you include all the taxes corporations have paid on their behalf as stockholders, their taxes aren’t really that low." - Having your cake and eating it.

How Citizen’s United and Anonymous Corporations Distort U.S. Politics Task Force Blog
Jan 19 - On the beneficial ownership issue - "Any U.S. voter can go to and see the names of donors to campaigns, political action committees and parties.The protection that disclosure provides breaks down, however, when anonymous, or shell, corporations enter the picture.

For more on beneficial ownership issues, see:
Land Registration etc. (Scotland) Bill and Beneficial Ownership
Land Matters
Jan 12 - Interesting commentary on land registration, transparency, accountability and the collection of taxes. Hat tip Carol Wilcox.

One way to claw back HS2 cost Financial Times
Jan 12 - Letter from Carol Wilcox, Labour Land Campaign, observing "All good public infrastructure investment increases local land values", noting how costs of public infrastructure can be covered, and even exceeded, if the self-funding of public infrastructure by public collection of land rent is in place. See editorial by Carol Wilcox in the Taxing Natural Rents Edition of Tax Justice Focus here.


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