Oliver Kazunga Senior Business Reporter
THE African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF) says the continent has established a taxation research network to enhance technical capacity for tax in Africa. ATAF chairman Gershem Pasi said the network, which is called the African Tax Research Network (ATRN) was an alliance between tax researchers,
academics and revenue administrations on the continent.
Pasi said the setting up of the ATRN was spearheaded by the need to identify potential synergies and linkages among ATAF member states. “Tax researchers and academics have forged an alliance with African revenue administrations to establish the African Tax Research Network (ATRN). It was established to enhance technical capacity for tax research on the continent.
“Its establishment was as a result of the need to identify potential synergies and linkage areas among academics, practitioners (tax lawyers and accountants) and tax officials from ATAF,” said Pasi who is also the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority commissioner general.
ATRN is a platform for African inspired dialogue, research and collaboration among researchers, policy makers and tax administrations. The network’s inaugural conference was held in Cape Town, South Africa last month under the theme, “Contemporary Tax Challenge for African Countries” where 47 papers on different taxation issues were presented.
Pasi said ATAF has been mandated to provide an administrative role for a period of three to five years as ATRN continues to develop. He said the governance documents for ATRN have just been finalised by the interim board.
Meanwhile, the 2nd International Conference on Tax in Africa which is being attended by African revenue commissioners, began in Togo yesterday. The three-day event, which ends tomorrow, is deliberating on among other issues, illicit financial flows.
According to the 2015 Africa Economic Outlook, 65 percent of all illicit financial flows occur through international commercial transactions that include tax evasion, trade mis-invoicing and abusive transfer pricing, which involve mainly multinational corporations.