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Statement of Joint Cooperation Regarding Abusive Tax Transactions

IR-2004-35, March 15, 2004

The commissioners of the tax administrations of Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States have begun discussions to form a joint task force to increase collaboration and coordinate information about abusive tax transactions.

The tax commissioners share a number of common challenges with respect to abusive tax transactions. While the tax administrations operate primarily within their own borders, many abusive tax transactions employ strategies that cross borders, and many of the promoters of these transactions operate globally without regard to national boundaries. Setting up a joint task force would enable the four countries to:

  • Share expertise, best practices and experiences in the field of tax administration to identify and better understand abusive tax transactions and emerging schemes, as well as those who promote them.
  • Exchange information about specific abusive transactions and their promoters and investors within the framework of the countries’ existing bilateral tax treaties.
  • Carry out their individual abusive tax transaction enforcement activities more effectively and efficiently.

“This is an unprecedented step in the battle against the plague of abusive tax transactions,” said IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson.

The commissioners of the four tax administrations agreed to meet in Washington in the next month to finalize a plan to launch this initiative.

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