Kazakhstan Tax and Investment: Fall 2017

kazakhstan-1184097_1280 (1)During the opening session of Kazakhstan’s Parliament on 4 September 2017, Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev devoted a large part of his presentation to the challenges facing Kazakhstan’s economy, achieving investment-led growth, and the role of fiscal policy in consolidating recent improvements in GDP growth. He also referenced the new draft Tax Code, which seeks to eliminate ineffective incentives and preferences while diminishing the shadow economy and simplifying tax administration. Continue reading “Kazakhstan Tax and Investment: Fall 2017”

A Closer Look: My Time at EXPO-2017

Last week, I was honored to participate in the Eurasian Week Forum, an annual event aimed at the development of the Eurasian Economic Union’s (EAEU) economy, investment and export potential, during my visit to Astana, Kazakhstan for EXPO-2017. The Forum served as an effective platform for developing business-to-business contacts, discussing tools and conditions for business development in the EAEU, and elaborating the strategy of EAEU economic development in the context of global challenges.

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Summary Report – 13th Annual Eurasia Tax Forum

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Representatives from ministries of finance, tax administrations, academic institutions, and the private sector gathered in Paris on 26-28 June 2017 for ITIC’s 13th annual Eurasia Tax Forum. The themes for this year’s Forum were recommended by regional officials and investors, and they included the following:

  • Tax Reform: Principles in Practice
  • Continuity and Change in International Tax
  • Taxation of the Digital Economy
  • The State of Play in Energy Investment
  • Natural Resources Taxation in Eurasia
  • Tax Issues in the Services Sector

Continue reading “Summary Report – 13th Annual Eurasia Tax Forum”

IMF Releases Regional Economic Outlook for Sub-Saharan Africa

generic-coverOn 10 May, the IMF released its Sub-Saharan Africa economic outlook, Restarting the Growth Engine. The report is available (in English and French) on the IMF’s website.

The report features a comprehensive examination of the informal sector in Sub-Saharan Africa, with the IMF estimating that the informal sector contributes 25%-65% of GDP and 30%-90% of nonagricultural employment. From a domestic revenue mobilization perspective, this significant portion of Sub-Saharan African economies represents potential budget revenues. Institutional challenges remain, however, when it comes to encouraging the conversion of the informal sector into the formal sector. A large tax burden and overly cumbersome compliance requirements are likely to have the paradoxical effect of encouraging economic activity to remain in the informal sector. The transformation of digital technologies and services in many Sub-Saharan Africa economies presents opportunities for converting the informal sector, while not creating onerous tax or administrative compliance burdens.

These topics will be further explored as technical sessions in ITIC’s Africa Tax Dialogue later this year, including examination of successful country case studies.

 

Dan Witt is President of the International Tax and Investment Center (ITIC).