ATO to investigate global tax avoidance

ATO to investigate global tax avoidance
The Australian Taxation Office says it will use information from the Paradise Paper to investigate Australians caught up in global tax avoidance.

The ATO says it has been working for several months in anticipation of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists releasing the so-called Paradise Papers, 13 million files from offshore services firms based in Bermuda and Singapore.

These were published around the world on Sunday.

The ATO’s deputy commissioner, international Mark Konza said the ATO was “in a position to respond decisively to this data release.”

The ATO is part of the joint international taskforce on shared intelligence and collaboration, 37 national tax administrations working together on cooperative investigations.

Domestically, it works with the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, the Australian federal police and Austrac.

Serious cases are referred to the serious financial crime taskforce for potential criminal investigation.

“ATO intelligence on tax avoidance comes from a variety of sources, including from concerned citizens, advisers, partner agencies and international bodies,” Mr Konza said in a statement.

“The data we are receiving from our international and domestic sources is comprehensive and current. This robust intelligence coupled with our powerful analytics capabilities, assists us to continue to tackle tax avoidance head-on.

“We anticipate further data may be published by the ICIJ and the ATO will continue to work closely with other tax administrations to share intelligence on advisers operating globally.”

At this stage, there is no suggestion of any Australian company acting illegally.


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