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The Inspector-General of Taxation's Annual Report 2012-13 was tabled in Parliament on 25 October 2013.

Under the heading "Emerging themes in tax administration", the IGOT says as follows:

"Emerging themes that I have previously highlighted continue to maintain their significance. These themes include: Timeliness of delivery, ATO staff capability, increasing ATO appetite for information, certainty of outcomes and compliance costs.

A current theme that is gaining momentum in a number of jurisdictions is a bill of rights for taxpayers. The issue before us is whether the current Taxpayers’ Charter, which is an ATO administrative document, is sufficient or whether we should seek a legislative bill of rights with enforceable remedies. A related issue that continues to be raised with the IGT is whether the current compensation schemes for aggrieved taxpayers are adequate and administered appropriately.

Another emerging theme is the increasing need to conduct significant valuation work. Whilst market value and arm’s length price may be sound economic concepts, their use in tax legislation has necessitated much valuation work for both taxpayers and revenue authorities alike. This may be explored as part of one of my announced but not yet commenced reviews. Anti-avoidance measures are another topic that has been a focus for revenue authorities, the tax profession and taxpayers. In my current work program, I have also indicated that I may conduct a review of the ATO’s administration of the general anti-avoidance rules (GAAR review).

A number of other emerging themes are largely covered by my current work program. For example, issues of base erosion and profit shifting are largely covered from an administrative perspective in the transfer pricing review. Similarly, revenue authorities’ risk-based approach to compliance is covered in my review into aspects of the ATO’s use of compliance risk assessment tools (risk review)."

For a copy of the Annual Report, go here

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