Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Links Nov 22

Exposing the lost billions: How financial transparency by multinationals on a country by country basis can aid development Eurodad
Nov 21 - New report released by Eurodad: "Pressure has mounted on the EU to crack down on tax avoidance by multinational companies with the release of a report that reveals in detail and with examples how dodgy accounting deprives some of the world's poorest nations of billions of dollars in revenue."

See also:
Eurodad and the need for transparency in Europe Tax Research UK
Nov 22 - Richard Murphy on the launch of Eurodad's new report. "There’s a long way to go in this debate as yet, with every chance the Commission proposals can be extended to embrace full country-by-country reporting. I’m up for the fight to achieve just that."

Congo's opaque mining deals may have lost the state $5.5 billion Christian Science Monitor
Nov 21 - On a British parliament statement
released yesterday. "Ahead of this month’s Presidential elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), documents have been released by UK Member of Parliament Eric Joyce that appear to show a systematic pattern of underselling Congolese mining assets to off-shore ’shell’ companies incorporated almost exclusively in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), the ultimate beneficial owners of which are often unknown, with the result that the Congolese people do not benefit from the vast mineral wealth in their country."

India's whistleblowers BBC World Service
Anti-corruption campaigners in India risk their lives. An investigation into how local-level campaigners against corruption in India face threats and violence - despite promises that the government will stamp out graft.

G20 president says Uruguay is no ‘fiscal haven’ and praises transparency commitment mercopress
Nov 17 - "Uruguay received a huge political boost from Mexico (the same it was denied from its Mercosur partners under influence from Argentina) in its dispute with the recent G20 summit which through spokesperson French president Nicholas Sarkozy described Uruguay as a ‘tax haven’ " Hat tip: Martin Hearson. Uruguay ranks 26th on TJN's Financial Secrecy Index and is towards the top end of the secrecy scale (see the Jurisdiction Report).

See also:
Brazil supports Uruguay in disagreeing with Sarkozy America Economía
(In Spanish)
Nov 20 - Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff expressed explicit support to President José Mujica of Uruguay against French President Nicolás Sarkozy's statement accusing Uruguay of being a "tax haven".

Tax harmonisation central to development Daily Monitor
Nov 22 - "While it is important to remember that Uganda and indeed the other East African countries have a right to protect their tax systems, they must be willing to cede national ground for regional good. Insufficient tax harmonization between the East African countries has been, and will invariably continue to be a barrier to progress in regional economic integration."

Nicholas Shaxson at St. Pauls Treasure Islands
Nov 21 - On Nick Shaxson speaking to people at St Pauls, the epicentre of Occupy London, followed by Tent City University, and then "a slightly more raucous showing" at the Bank of Ideas held inside their occupied UBS building in the City of London just next to their Finsbury Square encampment. See also the report in the Observer.

Washington Lobbying Firm Offers to Undermine Occupy Movement Occupy Wall Street

Nov 22 - "According to MSNBC, the lobbying firm Clark Lytle Geduldig & Cranford sent the memo to the American Bankers Association and offered to conduct 'opposition research' on Occupy Wall Street in order to construct 'negative narratives' for a fee of $850,000." See the post for further links.

Swiss Bankers Wary Of Withholding Tax Changes Tax-News
Nov 22 - "The Swiss Private Bankers Association (SPBA) has warned that a hasty reform of withholding tax in the Confederation could have serious long-term consequences for the Swiss financial centre." Interesting piece on withholding tax operations within Switzerland. Hat tip: Markus Meinzer.

France - Tax Fraud: At least 29 billion Euros a year Le Temps (In French)
Nov 21 - Budget minister Valérie Pécresse is presenting measures to reinforce the state against tax fraud - a phenomenon that is difficult to quantity. Estimates range from 29 to 51 billion Euros a year.


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