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Philippines Discusses Tax Policy In ASEAN Context

by Mary Swire,, Hong Kong

18 November 2014

The Philippines' Department of Finance recently hosted an international tax forum for tax officials and experts from the region to discuss tax policy and enforcement strategies.

To support the region's integration aims under the ASEAN Economic Community work program that will be concluded at the end of 2015, it was said that there is broad agreement on the need for international cooperation and multilateral instruments to boost tax administration and compliance efforts in the region. Trends and innovations in the area of international tax enforcement were discussed, including best practices in tax treaty negotiations, the facilitation of cross-border trade, and the curbing of tax avoidance and evasion.

The forum also addressed the global trend in combating base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) and also accounting and exchange of information standards, following the announcement that the Philippines is joining the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's Committee on Fiscal Affairs (CFA) from January 2015.

The Philippines has stated it will use its CFA seat "to present developing country perspectives and priorities, as well as shape strategies, tools, and other outputs to curb the global BEPS phenomenon." The taxation of e-commerce, extractive industries, and capital markets was also covered at the meeting, within the discussions on BEPS.

DOF Chief Economist and Undersecretary of the Policy Development and Management Services Group Gil Beltran urged that "tax systems must raise revenues to benefit the areas and communities where businesses operate and profit from."

Speaking after the forum, Bureau of Internal Revenue Commissioner Kim Henares said that "living in an increasingly globalized world requires Governments to adapt and update tax policy and enforcement strategies. International cooperation is key if we want to raise sustainable amounts of revenues to continue funding growth and investments for our people and country."

TAGS: compliance | Finance | tax | business | double tax agreement (DTA) | tax compliance | tax avoidance | mining | commerce | capital markets | Philippines | ministry of finance | agreements | e-commerce | transfer pricing | Association of East Asian Nations (ASEAN)

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