Published on 01 Jul 09
by "AUSTRALIAN TAX FORUM" JOURNAL ARTICLE
The paper analyses the need for, and feasibility of, creating a World Tax Organisation (WTO) in the area of taxation law. Considering whether to adopt an international approach to regulate taxation is best understood in the context of how businesses and governments have changed the way they operate in a globalised environment. Many businesses have ceased to have a distinct national identity in an economic sense and have become global and multinational in both their attitudes and operations. Relaxation of many governments’ policies, that have traditionally inhibited cross-border transactions, has assisted this process. We argue that the need to adopt an international approach to tax policy in an increasingly integrated and globalised world is self-evident and supported by the literature. However, there remains reluctance on the part of countries to adopt multilateral approaches to solving problems in the taxation arena. Furthermore, while the literature generally argues that a global framework and international cooperation to govern taxation policy is desirable, few have considered how this could effectively be achieved. Currently, no international body like the World Trade Organisation exists for tax matters, with the main forum for international tax cooperation being the OECD.