ATAF Renews Partnership with OECD to Amplify Africa's Voice on Taxation
One of the things that has happened over the past two years is that ATAF has developed a new working outlook which is called ATAF in the New Decade.
Cape Town, South Africa-The African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF) has renewed its partnership with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to amplify Africa's voice on taxation, writes Winston Mwale.
The partnership, announced during the opening of the TAF Annual Meetings in South Africa, will focus on ensuring that Africa is well represented in the global tax agenda and that the global tax rules are simple, fair, and responsive to the needs of developing countries, according to ATAF’s Manager: Strategic Partnership and International Cooperation, Leila Kituyi.
Kituyi said some of the achievements of the previous partnership include ATAF becoming a home server to the work that happens at the OECD and being able to articulate the voice of Africa on tax matters at such a forum.
Here is an excerpt of the interview that AfricaBrief’s Winston had with Kituyi.
Winston Mwale: During the opening session, we heard that you have struck some new partnerships with some organizations. So we just want to understand what that partnership is all about and what would be the benefit of it to ATAF?
Leila Kituyi: So first of all, it is a renewed partnership. Meaning that we have had a previous existing partnership with the OECD. Now this partnership stems from a long-standing relationship that the African Tax Administration Forum has had with the OECD over the past 10 years or so.
Now what this means in this new renewed operation is that, as you're aware, there is a global momentum to ensure that there is inclusivity in the work that is being discussed around the global taxation and global tax rules.
So what we intend to do with this renewed partnership is to ensure that Africa's voice is amplified as a true voice of matters pertaining to taxation through the work that ATF actually does. So that is the intention.
Winston Mwale: Okay, so maybe before we talk about how the renewed partnership will benefit ATAF in the future, maybe take us a bit back to the previous years that we have had this partnership. What would you say have been some of the achievements?
Leila Kituyi: Some of our achievements include the fact that ATAF is one of the only international organizations that is has observer status at the OECD inclusive framework. We are able to articulate the voice of Africa on tax matters at such a forum, meaning the positions that we take as Africa are included and are discussed as part of the negotiations to ensure that there is a more inclusive approach to the global tax rules.
Winston Mwale: And in the event that maybe this partnership wasn't renewed, what would have been the implications?
Leila Kituyi: The implications mean that Africa as a continent wouldn't have had a collective voice on tax matters. Meaning, as much as we recognize the liberty of states to have their own respective positions, there is no set position for Africa in terms of the collective view on tax matters.
So therefore, as the mandate the African Tax Administration Forum, our work ensures that collectively as a continent, so those who are not part of the inclusive framework for example, continue to have a voice in spaces they do not generally have the ability to speak for themselves.
Winston Mwale: Now after this partnership has been renewed, are there any new activities that you'd want to add in addition to the past activities?
Leila Kituyi: Yes, so one of the things that has happened over the past two years is that ATAF has developed a new working outlook which is called ATAF in the New Decade. And one of the OBJECTIVES that we're emphasizing on ATAF’s work in international tax policy work.
So as part of the renewed partnership with the OECD, we are looking to expand our work in this area and to ensure that we are playing a leading role in shaping the global tax agenda.
Winston Mwale: Any other remarks in relation to the renewed partnership?
Leila Kituyi: Well, we seek to ensure that the global tax rules are increasing simple, fair, and responsive to the needs of developing countries. That's all we're looking forward to. To ensure that Africa is well represented and Africa is also heard and included in the immunity process.
Winston Mwale: Well, it was a pleasure to speak to you.
Leila Kituyi: Thank you so much.