Tax avoidance and tax evasion threaten government revenues. The US Senate estimates revenue losses from tax evasion by U.S.-based firms and individuals at around 100 billion dollars a year. In many other countries, the sums run into billions of euros. This means fewer resources for infrastructure and services such as education and health, lowering standards of living in both developed and developing economies.
Tax transparency and the fight against cross-border tax evasion have been key topics at G20 Summits in Washington, London, Pittsburgh,Toronto, Seoul and Cannes (find out more about what happened at Cannes).
In the last couple of years, more progress toward full and effective exchange of information has been made than in all of the previous decade. A universally endorsed standard is now being implemented thanks to hundreds of new information exchange instruments.
Tax Co-operation 2010: Towards a Level Playing Field - Assessment by the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information - Annual review of transparency and exchange of information in more than 90 jurisdictions.