CONCERNED Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in Zambia have convened to assert their position on international taxation.
Their concern comes as a result of the Addis Tax Initiative (ATI) general assembly that is scheduled to take place in Lusaka from today to June 22, 2023 and was held as a solidarity with multilateral efforts to reform the international tax architecture to improve international tax cooperation.
The first meeting was held yesterday at Protea Hotel in Lusaka.
The meeting, that sought to unpack potential challenges in implementing the two pillar solution aimed at addressing international tax challenges arising from the digitalisation and globalisation of the economy, saw in attendance the Zambia Tax Platform (ZTP), Action Aid Zambia, JCP Zambia in partnership with Tax Justice Network Africa (TJNA) and Oxfam in Southern Africa.
Tax Justice Network Africa, acting director, Chenai Mukumba said the meeting was premised on the agenda of the ATI that was established as a multi- stakeholder partnership to promote domestic resource mobilisation that works for people and advances Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
“As a member of the inclusive framework that endorsed the two-pillar solution, our country is expected to implement both pillars in the coming years,” Mukumba said.
“However, African countries have expressed concerns with the overall two-pillar solution because of its complex rules.”
She added that the recent progress on numerous SDGs recently deterioted due to increasing economic constraints, with 210 million more people experiencing food insecurity and 100 million living in extreme poverty.
Mukumba said such is making the need to implement the Addis Ababa Action Agenda and the ATI’s commitment even more imperative.
“As you may be aware, the COVID-19 pandemic, the climate crisis, and geo- political conflicts have all hampered progress towards meeting the SDGs. In 2022, the cost of meeting global targets to fight hunger, poverty, and climate change rose by 25 per cent to US$ 176 trillion over the last year,” Mukumba said.
“Although there have been efforts to promote policy coordination in international taxation through the organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)/ Group of 20 (G20 led Inclusive Framework for Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) to which Zambia participates, in the hope of addressing harmful tax practices such as the shifting of profits to low tax jurisdictions by multinationals, finding sustainable solutions to these challenges is especially pertinent for African countries as they are more vulnerable to corporate tax abuse than developed countries,” said Makumba.
By Buumba Mwitumwa
Kalemba June 20, 2023