OACPS strategizing for good fiscal governance and fight against money laundering

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The Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) has commenced a high-level video seminar from June 21 to 24, 2021 on the issue of fiscal governance.

The purpose of the webinar is to enable the OACPS and its Member States to improve their knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the issue through technical cooperation mechanism, with a view to informing policy making on taxation within OACPS Member States.

The seminar aims at contributing to the dialogue between the OACPS and the EU on the EU list of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions and that of high-risk third countries with strategic deficiencies in their AML/CFT regimes.

A statement issued and copied to the Ghana News Agency said it was to enhance international cooperation on the matters, encourage investment for development; and maximise domestic resource mobilisation, including combating tax avoidance.

It said it was also aimed at encouraging effective exchange of information and strengthened cooperation at the regional and international (UN) levels between OACPS Members and strategic partners, as well as share best practices on AML/CFT issues with a view to establishing a common approach to dealing with the issues.

“More specifically, it will provide an opportunity for OACPS Members included on the EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax matters and that of high-risk third countries with strategic deficiencies in their AML/CFT regimes to share their experiences of the impact that these have on their economies and the policy actions they have taken in response,” it added.

The webinar is attracting high-profile experts, eminent personalities, OACPS ambassadors, international partners and seasoned speakers to discuss the efficiencies of tax jurisdictions of OACPS countries on the European Union’s lists of Non-Cooperative Countries and Territories for tax purposes (1), and high-risk third countries with strategic deficiencies in their anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing plans (2).

The statement said the economies of the OACPS Member States that were on the EU lists (1) and (2), but also on the Financial Action Group (FAG) lists, were suffering severe economic, political and social consequences.

“Thus, one of the major challenges of the seminar will be to contribute to the dialogue at different levels between the OACPS and its partners (the EU, FAG, in this case), with a view to galvanizing a common political will to fight against the above-mentioned deficiencies and thus improve international cooperation,” it said.

It said the financing of sustainable development of OACPS Member States in a global context marked by corruption, tax evasion, weak tax administrations or money laundering and terrorist financing, was the main issue of the seminar.

The statement said the seminar was fully in line with the dynamics of the new partnership agreement between the European Union and the OACPS, initialed on April, 15, 2021 in Brussels to strengthen cooperation between the two partners, to address together the common and international challenges and to achieve the objectives of strengthening economic, political and social cooperation.

Countries participating in the Webinar are: Seychelles, Dominica and Trinidad and Tobago; Fiji, Palau, Samoa and Vanuatu, Botswana, Ghana, Mauritius, Uganda and Zimbabwe; Bahamas, Barbados and Jamaica.

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