UN Economic Commission for Africa issues flagship report

On 23 March 2019, the United Nations (“UN”) Economic Commission for Africa issued the “Fiscal Policy for Financing Sustainable Development in Africa” report (Link).

The UN states that the Economic Report on Africa is the flagship report of the Economic Commission for Africa. The 2019 edition focuses on fiscal policy for financing sustainable development in Africa. To meet the Sustainable Development Goals, the financing needs across the continent are huge, and the financing gap is wide. Countries in Africa need to enhance domestic resource mobilization to finance the work towards the achievement of the Goals, and that requires sustained improvement in the efficiency and efficacy of fiscal policy.

One of the mechanisms to enhance financing sustainable development in Africa will be the implementation of international standards for the exchange of information for tax purpose. Such standards can help African countries to fight tax avoidance and evasion and illicit financial flows. The report states, that the Common Reporting Standard can help tax administrations to clamp down on companies that hide or withhold information relating to undeclared offshore funds.

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