Tax Justice Network
|Formation||March 2003 formal|
November 2002 informal
|Focus||tax avoidance, tax competition, tax evasion, and tax havens.|
|Headquarters||38 Stanley Avenue, Chesham, Buckinghamshire, HP5 2JG, United Kingdom.|
|An aspect of fiscal policy|
The Tax Justice Network (or TJN), is an independent international network, launched in 2003, focused on research, analysis and advocacy in the area of international tax and financial regulation, including the role of tax havens. TJN maps, analyses and explains the impacts of tax evasion, tax avoidance and tax competition; and supports the engagement of citizens, civil society organisations and policymakers with the aim of a more just tax system.
Foundation and growth
TJN grew out thanks to the process of the global social forum and the international movement of ATTAC. TJN is a multilingual, non-partisan, non-governmental, plural and diverse network. From 2003 to 2013 it was structured as a coalition, with both organisational members (such as social movements and national, regional and local civil society) and individual members (such as activists for justice in taxes, researchers, journalists, development specialists, trade unionists, and professionals of taxation, politicians and officials). Since 2013, when the Global Alliance for Tax Justice was set up to coordinate organisations working for tax justice around the world, TJN has been structured as an independent research and advocacy organisation.
Civil society is progressively committing itself to the issues of capital flight, tax evasion and tax fraud and competition, which are generally seen as obstacles to the mobilization of national resources in developing countries. In June 2000, one of the main NGOs dedicated to development published a report titled Tax Havens: “Unlocking the hidden billions to eradicate poverty”. The creation of the Tax Justice Network was in part a consequence of the publication of that report. In the United States, the Citizens for Tax Justice Organization has undertaken a similar effort, although with a national focus. On the contrary, TJN focuses primarily on the international level.
Since 2000, ATTAC, which was born in France in support of the called Tobin tax, has become a movement of international pressure that faces the problems of tax fraud, financial crime and the abuse of tax havens. In April 2005, ATTAC-Spain asked the Government not to recognize the fictitious and instrumental companies registered in tax havens before the Spanish legal system. And ATTAC-Germany played a decisive role in the creation of Tax Justice Network, whose diffusion is spreading in the Spanish-speaking countries.
Until recently, international fiscal policy was hardly a field for civil campaigns, as can be demonstrated by an example. In June 2003, the G8 meeting in Evian summoned 300,000 demonstrators in Geneva, 3,000 people registered to pressure the delegates and Geneva came to a standstill. In December 2003 the UN Committee of Fiscal Experts met in Geneva and TJN was the only civil society organization that attended and intervened in the meeting.
Functions and objectives.
The main purpose is:
- To eliminate cross-border tax evasion and limit tax avoidance, so large corporations and wealthy individuals pay tax in line with their ability to do so
- To increase citizens’ influence in the democratic control of taxation, and restrict the power of capital to dictate tax policy solely in its own interest
- To restore similar tax treatment of different forms of income, and reverse the shifting of the tax burden onto ordinary citizens
- To remove the tax and secrecy incentives that encourage the outward flow of investment capital from countries most in need of economic development
- To promote the role of tax and related legislation in supporting inclusive economic development, the relief of poverty, engaged citizens and more equal societies
TJN has a core staff, supported by a network of academics, professionals and other experts in a range of different fields.
In March 2005, TJN published the results of an investigation that demonstrated $11.5 trillion of the personal wealth of wealthy individuals held in offshore financial centers. In addition, to minimize taxes or to avoid paying them, a large proportion of this wealth is managed in about 70 tax havens. If the income from this wealth patrimony will pay the taxes in the countries where these rich individuals reside or where they obtain their wealth, the additional tax collection available for the financing of public services and for investment in the whole world would be around 255,000 million of annual dollars. We emphasize that this estimate of the loss of tax revenues does not include the tax evasion of transnational corporations or the reduction of tax revenues caused by tax competition.
The Financial Secrecy Index is a biennial publication of the TJN which was started in 2009 and was last released in January 2018. It covers 112 global jurisdictions and produces a "Secrecy Indicator" score for each on based on 20 qualitative criteria. Releases are widely covered in the media.
The TJN has reported on the OECD Base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) projects and conducted their own research that the scale of corporate taxes being avoided by multinationals is an estimated $660bn in 2012 (a quarter of US multinationals’ gross profits), which is equivalent to 0.9% of World GDP.
In July 2012, following a study into wealthy individuals with offshore accounts, the Tax Justice Network published claims regarding deposits worth at least $21 trillion (£13 trillion), potentially even $32 trillion, in secretive tax havens. As a result, governments suffer a lack of income taxes of up to $280 billion.
- Offshore financial centre
- Corporate tax haven
- Tax haven
- Financial Secrecy Index
- Base erosion and profit shifting
- Sol Picciotto
- Nicholas Shaxson
- Richard Murphy
- Civil Society
- Ireland as a tax haven
- Tax Foundation
- "Happy Birthday Tax Justice Network". TJN. 9 November 2012.
- "Core Funding Prospectus 2018–2021" (PDF). Tax Justice Network. 2018. Retrieved 24 March 2019.
- Alex Cobham (11 November 2016). "Tax Justice Network: A transition". Tax Justice Network. Retrieved 24 March 2019.
- "The Price of Offshore" (PDF). Tax Justice Network. 2018.
- "Report Says U.S. Is World's Second-Biggest Tax Haven". Bloomberg News. 30 January 2018.
- "U.S. Becomes World's Second-Biggest Tax Haven". Wall Street Journal. 30 January 2018.
- "UN urged to launch global effort to end offshore tax evasion". The Guardian. 30 January 2018.
- "Australia a safe haven for illicit funds, but Switzerland the world's worst". Sydney Morning Herald. 31 January 2018.
- "Tax Avoidance Costing U.S. $189 Billion: Tax Justice Network". Bloomberg News. 23 March 2017.
- "Base Erosion and Profit Shifting BEPS". Tax Justice Network. 2015.
- "13 trillion pounds in offshore tax havens: Report". The Times of India. 22 July 2012. Retrieved 22 July 2012.
- "Super rich hold $32 trillion in offshore havens". Reuters. 22 July 2012. Retrieved 22 July 2012.
- "Tax havens: Super-rich 'hiding' at least $21tn". BBC. 22 July 2012. Retrieved 22 July 2012.
- "Round-Up of Transparify 2018 Ratings". Transparify. Retrieved 7 July 2019.
- "Tax Justice Network | Who Funds You?". whofundsyou.org. Retrieved 7 July 2019.
- "Öffentliche Sitzung des Finanzausschusses" (in German). German Bundestag. 15 June 2016. Retrieved 16 February 2017.
- Tax Justice Network
- Global Tax Alliance for Justice
- Briefing Paper of the TJN
- TJN Co-founder Richard Murphy Tax Blog
- Bullough, Oliver. "The Fall of Jersey: How a Tax Haven Goes Bust," The Guardian online, 8 December 2015 - includes an interview with John Christensen, a native of Jersey, about the origins of TJN