| Global Alliance for Tax Justice is a new entry this year|
"Make multinationals pay their fair share!" declares the Global Alliance for Tax Justice's strapline. "With tax justice we can make a fairer world."
The organisation campaigns for greater transparency, democratic oversight and redistribution of wealth in tax systems around the world. For taxpayers, this means more pressure on governments to implement initiatives such as the automatic exchange of information (AEoI), clamp down on tax havens, and initiate public country-by-country reporting (CbCR).
The Alliance also wants governments worldwide to make their tax systems more progressive and societies more equal, particularly by increasing taxation on large companies to pay for greater investment in public services.
Founded in Lima, Peru in 2013, the rapidly-growing Alliance brings together work from the Asian-Australian Tax Justice Network, Red de Justicia Fiscal de America Latina y el Caribe, Tax Justice Network Africa, Tax Justice Europe (hosted by Eurodad – see the Global Tax 50 entry for Tove Maria Ryding), The FACT Coalition, Tax Justice Network USA and Canadians for Tax Fairness.
It is also in partnership with most major charities which campaign on tax, such as ActionAid, Christian Aid and Oxfam.
"We've joined together because wealthy people, banks and multinational corporations have built a sophisticated system of secretive international financial centres (or tax havens) supported by armies of accountants, lawyers and lobbyists, in order to deliberately pay less and less tax on their profits and wealth," says the Alliance. "Yet, this elite group is entirely dependent on publicly-funded infrastructure and institutions and publicly-educated workforces to make their money."
"Such systemic tax avoidance (both legal and illegal) has led ordinary people to lose out as wealth flows outwards from the public and into the private hands of the few. This distorts economies, undermines democracy and deprives people of the vital public services we need to live."
The Alliance shares the disdain of many of its affiliated organisations when it comes to the OECD's BEPS Project, seeing it as a sticking plaster on systemic problems with the global taxation system.
Aside from tracking international tax developments and adding its two cents, the Alliance has had a busy 2015, hosting an event called 'Tax Justice for Gender Equality' during the annual UN Commission on the Status of Women forum in New York, being the lead organiser for tax justice discussions at the World Social Forum in Tunisia, drawing attention to advocacy against illicit financial flows from Africa and putting on two 'Global Weeks of Action for #TaxJustice'.
It was also invited by the CSO Group to be the lead organiser in coordinating civil society tax justice interventions at the UN's International Conference on Financing for Development in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and jointly released a report on the corporate tax gap with the Tax Justice Network, Oxfam and Public Services International.
These tax justice agitators aren't going anywhere anytime soon.