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Tax Administrations Urged To Get Involved With Trade Deal Discussions

Need stressed to shift from being narrowly focussed to taking wider interest in the happenings in economy   The Fijian Government believes our own tax administration and the regional ones
15 Sep 2016 11:29
Tax Administrations Urged To Get Involved With Trade Deal Discussions
Attorney General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, at the Pacific Island Tax Administrators Association (PITAA) 13 Heads meeting at the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort and Spa, Natadola yesterday. Photo: WAISEA NASOKIA

Need stressed to shift from being narrowly focussed to taking wider interest in the happenings in economy

 

The Fijian Government believes our own tax administration and the regional ones can play a greater role in terms of bilateral/multilateral agreements.

The Attorney-General and Minister for Economy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, stressed this yesterday during the Pacific Island Tax Administrators Association 13 Heads Meeting.

The two-day meeting is being held at the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum, referring to Fijian experience, said it was generally noted that the tax people came in later on in negotiations when the deal is basically sealed.

He said this then does make a lot of difference as they then get seen as nuisance value.

“It is taken as we have already negotiated this nice diplomatic deal and now the tax person comes along and is expanding the works,” Mr Sayed-Khaiyum explained.

He was basically stressing the need for tax administrators to be a part of such bilateral/multilateral agreements which have an impact on taxation and revenues of the country.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said the tax departments tend to be sometimes be fairly narrowly focussed.

“So I think the tax office needs to take wider interest in terms of what is happening in the economy,” he said.

“This is in terms of the relationships which may be built or the policies at a foreign level being negotiated. This is to be able to force your way into that and have a bit of input into the decision.”

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum emphasised the significance was that the trade agreements with other countries impacts tax administrators ability to tax and how to tax.

But, at present, he said in Fiji, there is a heavy reliance not on higher levels of taxation but heavy reliance on tariffs as a source of revenue.

Edited by: Rachna lal

Feedback:  arishma.narayan@fijisun.com.fj


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