Top African tax legislators meet in London for tax avoidance conference

A major tax avoidance conference for 40 legislators from across Africa will be held in London next week to explore how parliamentarians can work to ensure tax transparency and greater international tax cooperation so as to put an end to tax avoidance and evasion

The event will be hosted by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association UK (CPA UK) in conjunction with the OECD and the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes.

Key speakers include Margaret Hodge MP, former chair of the Public Accounts Committee, addressing how parliaments play a critical role in ensuring that governments are meeting their international commitments, and are working to secure a stable economic future crucial for the delivery of transformative, inclusive and sustainable development outcomes within the post-2015 development framework.

Pascal Saint-Amans, director of the OECD Centre for Tax Policy and Administration, will also address participants. Commenting before the event, he said: ‘As leaders of public opinion and policy makers, members of parliament, have a significant role to play in putting the issues of tax avoidance and evasion on the political agenda of their countries and in ensuring that their countries benefit from increased tax transparency and international cooperation.’

The programme, taking place in the Houses of Parliament on 8-9 June, will also cover the following topics:

  • understanding of illicit revenue flows;
  • tax evasion
  • tax avoidance; and
  • the ways in which parliamentarians can work to prevent abuse of tax rules.

The participants will also explore ways in which they can engage with and influence global, regional and national policy discussions on this agenda, and promote information exchange to achieve tax transparency.

This builds on the work of the G20 and OECD to clamp down on abuse of tax treaties, profit shifting and aggressive tax avoidance by major global companies, currently being addressed by the OECD Base Erosion & Profit Shifting (BEPS) project.

The conference is supported by the Project for Strengthening Functional and Technical Capacities of Supreme Audit Institutions, National Parliaments and Civil Society for the control of Public Finance in PALOP and Timor-Leste, an EU and United Nations Development Programme joint project which supports the external oversight of public finances in African, Caribbean and Pacific countries.

Further information on the event is available at www.uk-cpa.org

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