THE NAIROBI DECLARATION ON TAXATION AND DEVELOPMENT
1) We, the undersigned organisations and networks, having shared extensive research on the problems facing sub-Saharan African countries at the inaugural Pan-African Conference on Taxation and Development held in Nairobi, 25-26 March 2010
a) recognise the common threat to political progress, sustainable economic development and to poverty eradication that results from the unacceptable domestic and international obstacles to effective taxation for development.
b) affirm that effective and equitable taxation and is critical to the independence of African countries; and to the strengthening of channels of political representation and government accountability.
c) commit to work together for reform in the areas of domestic taxation, revenues from natural resource extraction and international taxation.
1) Domestic taxation
a) Having regard for the importance on tax compliance and accountability for tax revenues and expenditure we:
b) call on African governments to commit to full transparency on tax revenues and tax expenditures.
c) call on African governments to remove tax exemptions for multinational corporations and wealthy individuals and elites.
d) call on revenue authorities to simplify the tax code and reduce the compliance burden, particularly for small businesses.
e) call on fiscal research institutes to investigate the feasibility of land Value taxes in urban areas to funding of local infrastructure provisions, and to conduct analysis into the benefits of Export Processing Zones to African countries.
f) agree to work within civil society to promote taxpayer education and compliance and call on other civil society organisations to do so.
g) commit to ongoing research and advocacy with regard to the impacts of tax policy on men, women and vulnerable groups.
2) Revenues from natural resource extraction
a) Having regard for the importance of strong governance to ensure African governments benefit from natural resource extraction we:
b) note the power and information asymmetry between African governments and multinational companies in negotiating fair contracts and the lack of capacity to determine appropriate prices.
c) question the lack of transparency in mining contracts across the continent which increase potential for bribery and corruption and undermine accountability.
d) call on African governments to audit natural resource bases before signing mining contracts.
e) call on African governments to strengthen legal provisions relating to contracts, possibly including measures to over-ride stability agreements that prevent future governments from re-negotiating contract provisions, possibly including limits to length of the contracts.
f) call on African regional bodies to explore regional coordination and harmonisation of fiscal regimes, and information exchange to challenge harmful tax competition in the mining sector.
g) call on African regional bodies to commit to South-South learning of successful tax practices in relation to mining.
h) call on African governments to sign on to the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI), and to ratify the United Nations Convention Against Corruption.
i) call on aid donors to build the capacity of civil society in monitoring the activities of mining companies.
j) affirm that if it is not possible to arrive at a fair contract that, resources should be left in the ground for exploitation by future generations.
3) International taxation
a) Having regard for the leakages which undermine the tax bases of African countries we:
b) note that developing countries lose more as a result of international tax evasion and avoidance than they receive in foreign aid.
c) note the need for policy coherence among aid donors to take steps at the national and international level to challenge international tax dodging.
d) affirm the need for international and regional tax cooperation to challenge harmful tax competition and stop tax leakages.
e) challenge the widely held assumption that low tax rates encourage economic growth and development.
f) call on the UN, IMF, World Bank and OECD to include civil society in international processes to challenge tax leakages.
g) call on the G20 to involve African countries in international processes with regard to tax cooperation.
h) having regard for the need for greater transparency among multinational companies, we call on the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) to adopt a country- by - country reporting of key financial information for all listed companies
i) having regard for the corrosive impact of financial secrecy in offshore financial centres we call on the G20 and the UN to move towards a multilateral agreement for the automatic exchange of tax information between jurisdictions, particularly developing countries.
j) call on African regional and pan African bodies to initiate effective multilateral programmes for exchanging tax information to combat tax evasion.
k) call on African governments to introduce legislation to make tax evasion a predicate offense under existing anti-money laundering provisions.
l) call on aid donors to invest in strengthening the capacity for revenue authorities and to provide technical expertise in monitoring large taxpayers, in particular, transfer pricing issues.
m) commit to research the impact of current tax regimes and campaign for reforms at the international level to ensure that the taxing rights of African countries are not undermined by abusive international tax practices
Alvin Mosioma Kenya Tax Justice Network-Africa
Sandra Kidwingira Kenya Tax Justice Network -Africa
John Christensen United Kingdom Tax Justice Network /IS
Dereje Alemayehu Kenya Christian Aid- East Africa
Jack Ranguma Kenya Tax Justice Network-Africa
Attiya Waris Kenya University of Nairobi
Wakaguyu Wakiburi Kenya Tax Justice Reference Group
Semkae Kilonzo Tanzania Policy Forum
Jane Nalunga Uganda SEATINI
Alex Cobham United Kingdom Christian Aid
David McNair United Kingdom Christian Aid
Katrin Mc Gauran Netherlands SOMO
Aldo Calieri USA Rethinking Bretton Woods Project/Centre of Concern
Soren Ambrose Kenya Action Aid
Charles Chivweta Zambia Norwegian Church Aid
Samuel Fakile Nigeria Covenant University of Ota
Nara Monkam South Africa Africa Tax Institute
Chilufya Chileshe Zambia Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection
Abdoulaye Doudou Sarr Mauritania Publish What You Pay
Silvana Toska USA Cornell University
Jean Marie Bolika DR Congo ILDI
Michael Otieno Kenya NTA
Jean Mballa Mballa Cameroon CRADEC
Steve Manteaw Ghana ISODEC
Alradjé dono dédengart Chad N'Djamena University
Kennedy Masime Kenya Centre for Governance & Development
Joanne Carpenter United Kingdom PANOS
Fiona Chipunza Zimbabwe AFRODAD
Vitus Azeem Ghana Integrity Initiative
Jean Luc Muke DR Congo Avocats Verts
Julien Tingain Côte d'Ivoire Publish What You Pay
Manyewu Mutamba South Africa IDASA
Rebecca Tanui Kenya BEACON
Vera Mshana South Africa Africa Tax Institute
Kiama Kaara Kenya KENDREN
Isaack Otieno South Africa Institute for Security Studies
Marjolein Brouwer Netherlands Oxfam Novib
Lina Sjaavik Tanzania Norwegian Church Aid
Dennis Eliashifie Tanzania Norwegian Church Aid
Savior Mwambwa Zambia Centre for Trade Policy & Development
Mathias Kafunde Malawi Centre for Social Concern
Peter Kioko Kenya Institute of Certified Public Accountants-Kenya
Saviour Mwambwa Zambia Centre for Trade Policy & Development
Evariste Munyampunda Tanzania GTZ- East Africa
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