ISLAMABAD: United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres has appointed Mohammad Ashfaq Ahmed of Pakistan as member of the Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters for a term of four years.

Selected on the recommendation of the Pakistan government, Mr Ahmed is among the distinguished group of 25 tax experts from around the world to serve as members of the committee for the 2021-25 term.

He is currently holding the post of director general of international taxes at the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).

The United Nations tax committee guides countries’ efforts to advance stronger and more forward-looking tax policies adapted to the realities of globalised trade and investment amid an increasingly digitalised economy and worsening environmental degradation. The committee assists countries in their efforts to prevent double or multiple taxation, as well as non-taxation, broaden their tax base, strengthen their tax administrations and curb international tax evasion and avoidance.

The new committee membership brings together tax practitioners with expertise in a wide range of areas, such as double tax treaties, transfer pricing, avoiding and resolving tax disputes, taxation of the extractive industries, taxation of digital economy, environmental taxation and value-added taxes. While nominated by the governments of their countries, the committee members serve in their personal capacity.

In welcoming the appointments, President of the Economic and Social Council Ambassador Munir Akram said: “I am delighted to see that such a diverse and capable group of experts has been appointed. I have high expectations for the committee’s continued success in challenging times, which are nevertheless full of opportunity to stem the tide of tax-related illicit financial flows and shore up developing-country capacities to mobilise and invest domestic resources in their own development.”

The majority of the newly appointed members come from developing countries, and, for the first time since its inception, the committee has a majority of women experts.

The first meeting of the new membership of the committee will take place in October during which the experts will determine the work plan for their term.

The other members of the committee are from India, Nigeria, Chile, South Korea, Malawi, Ghana, Mexico, Zambia, Jamaica, Ireland, Indonesia, Myanmar, Mauritania, Argentina, Angola, the Netherlands, Russian Federation, Canada, Norway, Germ­a­ny, Ecuador, Italy, Sweden and China.

Published in Dawn, July 24th, 2021

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