In recent years, the STA has actively enhanced its exchanges and cooperation with international organizations such as the United Nations (UN), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank Group (WBG) as well as regional taxation organizations such as the Study Group on Asian Tax Administration and Research (SGATAR), the African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF), the Inter-American Center of Tax Administrations (CIAT), the Inter-European Organization of Tax Administration (IOTA). It has been deeply involved in tax agendas under the framework of the G20, including the BEPS project, the CRS project, and providing assistance to developing countries in capacity building. In deepening tax cooperation with BRICS countries, it attended regular meetings and seminars to exchange and communicate on tax-related topics. It took part in key projects initiated by the Forum on Tax Administration (FTA), and co-led with Canada on the capacity building project. Mr. Wang Jun, the STA Commissioner, attended and addressed the 49th SGATAR Annual Meeting held in Yogyakarta, Indonesia in October 2019, pushing forward with the reform of SGATAR and increasing the quality and efficiency of cooperation.
Exchanges and Cooperation under the G20 Framework
In 2019, the STA continued to be deeply involved in the BEPS Action Plan entrusted to OECD by the G20. It actively participated in many BEPS-related meetings and played an active role in the formulation of a consensus-based solution in response to the challenges arising from the digitalization of economy and contributed China's wisdom.
Participation in FTA Activities
Mr. Sun Ruibiao, the Vice Commissioner of STA, led the STA delegation to the FTA Advisory Committee Meeting held by OECD in Paris, France in 2019, conducted in-depth discussions concerning international tax cooperation, tax certainty, evaluation and analysis on the impacts of BEPS and introduced major approaches and achievements of Chinese tax authorities in promoting tax administration efficiency by using big data, which were widely acclaimed by delegates of the meeting.
Participation in OECD Activities
The STA started to take part in activities of the Committee on Fiscal Affairs (CFA) from 1996. Such involvement has become more intense since China became a formal CFA observer in 2004. In 2015, the STA and the OECD signed a Memorandum for Cooperation 2016-2018. During the First Conference of Belt and Road Initiative Tax Administration Cooperation Forum (BRITACOF) held in Wuzhen, Zhejiang Province of China in April 2019, the two sides signed the new round of Memorandum for Cooperation 2019-2023 which covers various forms of pragmatic cooperation in international tax reform, tax policy and capacity building.
Key results of STA's cooperation with OECD are as follows:
◆ The STA co-organized a symposium of country-by-country reporting with the OECD. OECD experts and representatives from 21 tax authorities including China, exchanged views on the reporting, exchange and use of CBC reporting. The symposium is a significant action to implement the 13th action plan of the BEPS project, and an important measure to strengthen international cooperation and improve information transparency.
◆ Since 2005, the STA has been attending meetings of CFA, its subordinates as well as the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes and served as the vice-chair of Working Party 10 (Exchange of Information and Tax Compliance). In 2019, the STA actively participated in the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes and accepted the second round of peer review on Special Exchange of Information and participated in formulating the review standards of Automatic Exchange of Information. In September 2019, it successfully finished the automatic exchanges of financial account information in tax matters.
◆ The STA sent over 100 tax officials to attend Global Relation Programme event held in Multilateral Tax Centers of OECD in Seoul, Ankara, Budapest, Vienna and Mexico. In 2019, 25 officials attended thirteen events in these Multilateral Tax Centers (MTCs).
◆ The STA made best use of OECD-STA Multilateral Tax Center to provide training courses for domestic tax officials and those from developing countries in Asia, Africa, Latin America, etc., whose number is increasingly growing. In 2019, the STA organized seven events in this MTC. 575 domestic tax officials, 429 from the Chinese Mainland and 12 from Hong Kong and Macao, participated in these events.
Cooperation with IMF
In May, 2019, the STA signed a Three-year Technical Cooperation Agreement (2019-2021) with the IMF, starting a new round of three-year cooperation. Under the agreement, the STA received four delegations of IMF experts in 2019, which respectively focused on transfer pricing management of financial transactions, taxation of the financial sector, collection and management of the social insurance fees and performance management.
Pushing Forward the SGATAR Reform
The Study Group on SGATAR is the only official organization for collaboration on tax administration in the Asia-Pacific region. As the president of the Permanent SGATAR Task Force, the STA, together with Indonesia and Japan, achieved fruitful results in research on SGATAR's future development, and cooperation with other international organizations to improve members' tax collection and management capabilities and promote the improvement of tax indicators for better business environment. During the 49th Annual Meeting of the SGATAR
in 2019, the provision about capacity building, the future development of
SGATAR and tax-related indicators in Doing Business are endorsed by the Heads of Delegations (HODs).
Wang Jun, the Commissioner of the STA, attended the 49th Annual Meeting of the SGATAR, and delivered a keynote speech to share the measures China had taken to implement larger-scale tax and fee cuts, which was positively evaluated by all sides.
Helping Developing Countries with Capacity Building
The STA helps developing countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America with their capacity building in a variety of ways, including legislative consultation, featured discussion, expert support, experience sharing and technical assistance. In 2019, the STA carried out aid projects on taxation with Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation, and held seminars for developing countries taking advantage of the cooperation projects of the People's Bank of China and the IMF, inviting countries along "the Belt and Road" to promote international cooperation, with 26 tax officials from 15 developing countries participated.
The STA makes full use of the multilateral tax centers established in cooperation with the OECD to help developing countries improve their capabilities in tax collection and administration. In 2019, seven seminars were held for 134 tax officials from 37 developing countries.