National tax laws have not kept pace with the globalisation of corporations and the digital economy, leaving gaps that can be exploited by multi-national corporations to artificially reduce their taxes.

OECD’s Action Plan on Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) offers a global roadmap that will allow governments to collect the tax revenue they need to serve their citizens. It also gives businesses the certainty they need to invest and grow.

Produced at the request of the G20 and introduced at the G20 Finance Ministers’ meeting in Moscow, the Action Plan identifies 15 specific actions that will give governments the domestic and international instruments to prevent corporations from paying little or no taxes.

“This  Action Plan, which we will roll out over the coming two years, marks a turning point in the history of international tax co-operation. It will allow countries to draw up the co-ordinated, comprehensive and transparent standards they need to prevent BEPS,” said OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría. “International tax rules, many of them dating from the 1920s, ensure that businesses don’t pay taxes in two countries – double taxation. This is laudable, but unfortunately these rules are now being abused to permit  double non-taxation. The Action Plan aims to remedy this, so multinationals also pay their fair share of taxes.