The Pan African Lawyers Union (PALU) was a proud participant to the 8th Annual Africa Tax Research Network (ATRN) Congress, organized by the the African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF) in partnership with the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA), which took place on 29-31 August 2023 in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania. Hon. Prof. Adolf F. Mkenda, Minister of Education, Science, and Technology, graced the Opening Ceremony.
Held under the theme “Contemporary Taxation Issues in Africa”, the Congress welcome to the biggest city in East African over 235 participants from Ministries of Finance, African Tax Administrations, Civil Society, Academia and other key partners and individual tax policy experts, who listened in on the presentations of 44 paper submissions.
One of the salient discussions took place around the benefits and challenges of the two-pillar approach to international taxation advocated by the OECD. Equally enlightening was the discussions on the difficulties and needs to effectively high-tax net worth individuals, including government VIPs, in Africa. Finally, debates also surrounded resources taxation, which consists of one of the principal sources of Illicit Financial Flows in Africa.
In his prepared remarks, Hon. Mkenda alluded to the fact that the African continent is reeling from the economic fallout resulting from the disruptions in global supply chains caused by the Russia-Ukraine conflict, tightening global financing conditions, dwindling Overseas Development Assistance (ODAs), soaring debt, the negative effects of climate change, and indeed it is yet to fully recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Official Communiqué finally highlighted the agreement from participants that instead of relying on taxation agendas set externally, Africa needs to set its own taxation agenda and the AU platform should be supported and strengthened to ensure a common Africa position at negotiations that are held at an equal footing basis.