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Home > Privacy and Government > Government Threats to Privacy > Anti-Privacy Law and Regulation > Taxation > OECD Moves Against Financial Privacy


OECD Moves Against Financial Privacy

Emerging developments in international tax policy illustrate well how many taxation schemes threaten privacy.

In a report titled "Toward Global Tax Co-operation," the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has proposed to give governments broad access to personal financial information for the purpose of collecting taxes. This proposal is akin to the pernicious "Know Your Customer" regulations that were solidly rejected in the United States in 1998. Though taxes as a percentage of GDP have consistently risen in OECD countries over the last 20 years, the OECD regards it as "harmful" to see countries competing against one another to provide good services at low cost to residents, citizens, and investors.

The OECD consistently works to increase the ability of its member governments to access the financial information of their citizens. It issued a report in April, 2000 called "Improving Access to Bank Information for Tax Purposes." "Bank information" is, of course, a euphemism for bank customer information.

The OECD's efforts represent a great threat to financial privacy because many OECD member states lack the traditions of freedom and personal autonomy that the U.S. enjoys, and because the OECD is comprised of unelected bureaucrats who represent the interests of governments more than people.


Links:

OECD's Glass House (Part 2 of 2) by Daniel Mitchell, Washington Times (December 8, 2000)

OECD's Perpetual Tax Grab (Part 1 of 2) by Daniel Mitchell, Washington Times (December 7, 2000)

Big Brother or Financial Privacy? by Daniel Mitchell, Washington Times (December 3, 2000)

An OECD Proposal to Eliminate Tax Competition Would Mean Higher Taxes and Less Privacy, by Daniel J. Mitchell, PH.D., The Heritage Foundation (September 18, 2000)

Towards Global Tax Co-operation: Report to the 2000 Ministerial Council Meeting and Recommendations by the Committee on Fiscal Affairs, Progress in Identifying and Eliminating Harmful Tax Practices, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (June 26, 2000)

Improving Access to Bank Information for Tax Purposes, Statement of Gabriel Makhlouf, Chair of the Committee on Fiscal Affairs, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (April 12, 2000)

Comments? comments@privacilla.org (Subject: OECD)

[updated 01/05/01]



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