25 October 2013
Tax revenue enables governments to provide essential services such as health and education as well as infrastructure such as roads and transport. Tax evasion deprives everyday people of these vital services. In developing countries this can mean the difference between life and death.
Illegal, trade-related tax evasion alone will be responsible for some 5.6 million deaths of young children in the developing world between 2000 and 2015. That is almost 1,000 a day.
Money that is lost to the developing world in unpaid taxes would be enough to reach the United Nations Millennium Development Goals several times over. These goals aim to halve world poverty by 2015, a target which could be easily achieved if tax systems favoured the poor instead of the rich.
As much as US$255 billion is lost every year to governments around the world because of the no or low taxation of funds in offshore centres. It doesn’t have to be this way.
Tax Justice Network Australia is a growing network of individuals and organisations calling for fairer tax systems. It is the Australian arm of the Tax Justice Network.
The Tax Justice Network Australia is asking the Australian Government to:
Stop Tax Dodging by introducing laws that would:
- Provide automatic exchange of information between tax authorities about money flowing across borders;
- Greater disclosure by companies of how much profit they make and how much tax they pay in each country they operate in; and
- Tougher rules on disclosing the ultimate owners of companies and trusts so banks know who they are dealing with and can ensure that the money has not been illegally sourced.
Make Mining Companies Accountable by introducing laws into Australia that would require mining, oil and gas companies to have to report on a country by country basis.
Stop Tax Dodging within Multinational Companies - by tightening up Australia’s tax laws and international tax rules so that developing countries are not cheated out of their fair share of tax revenue.
Ban Bribery by making it illegal for companies operating in Australia to pay bribes in any form anywhere in the world.
Introduce Whistleblower Protection laws to protect and reward whistleblowers in private businesses for exposing tax evasion and tax avoidance.