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UN expert calls on new boss to abolish tax havens

| 18/10/2016 | 2 Comments
CNS Business

Alfred de Zayas

(CNS Business): The new United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, is being asked by one of the body’s human rights experts to call a world conference on tax avoidance and evasion, with the goal of abolishing all tax havens. The UN’s independent expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Alfred de Zayas, said last week that Guterres’ appointment as the new UN leader offered “a unique opportunity to advance the fight against tax evasion and illicit financial flows” when the world’s attention is on these crucial issues.

In a release from the UN’s human rights agency, de Zayas said he hoped the abolition of tax havens and a United Nations Tax Authority to combat offshore tax avoidance and evasion would be among Guterres’ priorities.

“Trillions of dollars necessary for combatting extreme poverty and addressing climate change are being kept offshore, thus escaping just taxation and effectively stealing hundreds of billions of dollars each year from the public treasuries,” he stated.

“Widespread tax avoidance, tax evasion, tax fraud and profit-shifting, facilitated by bank secrecy and a web of shell companies registered in tax havens, are now routinely documented, but their true human cost  is only revealed progressively,” he said, following the publication of his report to the General Assembly on these matters.

He said an increasing number of human rights experts were pointing to tax abuse as a human rights issue.

“Corruption, bribery, tax fraud and tax evasion have such grave effects on human dignity, human rights and human welfare that they shock the conscience of mankind. They should be prosecuted nationally and internationally,” de Zayas added.

Pointing to financial crime perpetrated by speculators, hedge funds and transnational companies who skirt taxes and loot governments, he said the UN “must take concerted action”, as he called for a convention to outlaw tax-havens worldwide.

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Category: Finance, Financial Services

Comments (2)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    First they must shut down London, Isle of Man, Jersey and Gurnsey. !! Do not expect us to police your country, that is yours and the other residents business.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Sorry, the adults are not going to go along with this. Just a waste of breath (but a lucrative career nonetheless.)

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