University of Exeter: Business School to hold conference with IMF on tax responses to COVID-19

‘Tax Administration and Tax Policy Responses to COVID-19’ will be jointly hosted by the University of Exeter Business School’s Tax Administration Research Centre (TARC) and the International Monetary Fund’s Fiscal Affairs Department.

The free event, which will take place from 2-3 December, will look at the lessons learned from the actions taken by governments during the pandemic, in a bid to understand the role of tax systems in responding to shocks like COVID-19.

Policymakers and leading tax academics will share their practical experience and research findings in a series of panel events and webinars that will examine measures such as burden sharing, cash-flow support and tax compliance management, as well as the adoption of digital solutions and the gradual transition between different phases of the pandemic.

Professor Christos Kotsogiannis, Director of the University of Exeter Business School’s TARC research centre and co-chair of the event, explained the importance of examining the effect of such an ‘unprecedented’ shock to tax systems.

He said: “During the COVID-19 pandemic we have seen disruption to economies and society on a scale never witnessed before.”

“Governments have implemented a plethora of relief measures, including in the tax area, to protect lives and livelihoods and ensure business continuity, which has resulted in increased borrowing to unprecedented levels.

“We have also seen the pandemic playing a catalyst role in driving digitalization in government, presenting new challenges and opportunities.

“With vaccines being rolled out and governments slowly reopening their economies and moving to the next phase of consolidation, now is a good time to reflect on what we can learn from this unprecedented shock to tax systems worldwide.”

Some of the biggest names in tax policy and administration are among the invited speakers and panellists, including Sir Tim Besley from the London School of Economics, Edward Kieswetter, Commissioner of South African Revenue Services, Modeste Mopa, Cameroon’s Director General of Taxes and Rivo Reitmann, Deputy Director General of the Tax and Customs Board of the Republic of Estonia.

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