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March 30, 2021 Recording – Paying their due: reforming international corporate taxation in the global recovery.
March 30, 2021 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
March 30, 2021 at 1:00pm EDT (GMT -0400)
$10.00 – Suggested per webinar
- Edmund Valpy Fitzgerald
- Toby Sanger
Multinational companies, particularly the ‘digital giants’, avoid effective taxation of their profits and thus undermine fiscal provision of essential public services, particularly in developing countries. Despite G20 mandated multilateral negotiations at the OECD since 2012, progress has been slow – particularly during the Trump administration. In consequence a number of countries have recently introduced their own conflicting ‘digital levies’.
The Independent Commission on the Reform of International Corporate Taxation (ICRICT http://www.icrict.com/ ) is a significant actor in this debate, lending technical expertise to civil society advocacy on progressive tax reform. The Commission has led international debate with four key precepts: (i) corporation tax is the best instrument to reduce inequality, both within countries and between developed/developing countries; (ii) tax on pure profit (economic rent) is not a disincentive to productive investment and employment; (iii) multinationals must be taxed on global income and apportioned according to where profits are generated; and (iv) tax havens could be eliminated by ensuring an effective minimum tax rate worldwide.
This February the EU adopted ‘country by country’ profit reporting by multinationals; US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellin told G20 finance ministers that US “will engage robustly to address … the tax challenges of digitisation and a robust global minimum tax”; and the United Nations supported minimum tax rates and a new global tax forum. Prof. Valpy Fitzgerald will summarise the process of international tax negotiations at the OECD and explain how ICRICT has become an effective advocate for progressive reform and assess the potential for real progress in 2021 on progressive taxation of profits and wealth.
Where does Canada stand? For too many years, Canada has been a laggard in taking action on reforms to make multinationals pay their fair share of taxes, waiting for a consensus to develop instead of taking any leadership or action outside of the OECD minimum. It was only in the last election that the Trudeau government committed to make sure that multinational tech giants pay corporate tax on the revenue they generate in Canada and make other reforms to reduce international corporate tax dodging. We still haven’t seen any action in this area since then, but Toby Sanger is hopeful that, with Chrystia Freeland in the Finance portfolio and a more positive administration in the US, Canada will finally take more meaningful action.
Edmund Valpy Fitzgerald, from the United Kingdom, is Emeritus Professor of International Development Finance, Oxford University, Fellow of St Antony’s College, Oxford and an ICRICT Commissioner. Until recently, he served as Head of the Department of International Development, Oxford University. Engaged in research and publication on global capital flows, open economy macroeconomics, emerging market economies and international tax cooperation, Professor Fitzgerald has acted as adviser to a number of governments (including the UK and Mexico), international institutions (including the UN and the OECD) and civil society agencies (including Oxfam and TJN).