Tax

Enough Food For Everyone IF governments stop big companies dodging tax in poor countries, so millions of people can free themselves from hunger.

If big global companies stop avoiding the tax they owe in countries such as India, where one in three of the world’s malnourished children lives, then the money could be used to help feed children like Sehriya (pictured below).

Governments must act to close the loopholes that allow these companies to get away with not paying what they owe.

 Sehriya, 4, is severely malnourished. Half of all child deaths in India are linked to hunger

What do we want the UK Government to do about tax?

  1. The UK Government should help ensure that developing countries can raise enough from taxes to tackle hunger and build a more secure food system by introducing a requirement in its Finance Bill for UK companies and wealthy individuals to report their use of tax schemes that have an impact on developing countries.

  2. When such tax schemes are identified, the UK should use its current powers to notify the tax authorities of developing countries and assist in the recovery of the money they’re owed.

  3. The UK should use its presidency of the G8 to launch a Convention on Tax Transparency. Under this Convention, countries would commit to preventing individuals and companies from hiding wealth so that it’s untraceable, tax havens would be required to share with developing countries any important information on hidden wealth and assets, and developing countries would receive assistance in recovering taxes due to them.

Enough Food For Everyone IF the UK Government stops big companies dodging tax in poor countries.

 

What did IF achieve on tax and transparency?

  • In the UK: in March, hundreds of IF campaigners lobbied local MPs and thousands wrote letters to George Osborne calling on him to reform UK tax laws in the Budget. These reforms would have helped developing countries recover the taxes they are owed. But the Treasury didn't heed our calls, so there's still much work to do.
  • Later, however, in May, he couldn't ignore our calls to tackle 'the elephant in the room' - our own tax havens, those in overseas territories and crown dependencies. At the Trade, Transparency and Tax summit in June, all UK tax havens committed to sign a convention that would help improve transparency.
  • On the global stage: thousands of you gathered in Belfast and put huge pressure on the G8 to set out great ambition to tackle tax dodging, which they did days later at their summit - unthinkable just a few months ago. But still more work is needed to see this ambition turned into real action that will help poor countries.

The public argument for a crackdown on tax dodging has been won, but the political battle remains. Future G8s and G20s must finish the job.