Statement by the FTA Chair, Hans Christian Holte, on alleviating burdens on cross-border employees impacted by travel restrictions


14 April 2020 

  Hans Christian Holte, Fta Chair

 To help contain the spread of COVID-19, governments are taking a number of exceptional measures, including placing significant restrictions on cross-border travel as well as strict quarantine requirements. As a result, in some countries a large number of people are having to remain temporarily in a location other than that where they usually work or reside. I welcome the guidance and recommendations issued by the OECD Secretariat which should address a large number of treaty related issues that have been raised. However, as there can be additional issues that may require actions by tax administrations, I have also written to Forum on Tax Administration Commissioners asking that we work together to alleviate adverse tax consequences for taxpayers in appropriate circumstances. Where the facts of a situation warrant, I would encourage the consideration of relief through targeted bilateral or multilateral arrangements, coordinated unilateral measures, or other arrangements, and in conjunction with our tax policy counterparts. The guiding principle, shared across the membership of the FTA, should be that the exceptional circumstances of the COVID-19 crisis call for an exceptional level of coordination and co-operation between countries to mitigate cross-border impacts on employees and employers that are beyond their control. ‌


Other actions to tackle Covid-19

With tax playing an important role in the response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the OECD has outlined a range of emergency tax measures governments could adopt to curb the economic fallout of the crisis, and has developed a compilation of all tax measures taken by governments so far.


Tax administration

Tax policy

Tax treaties


The OECD is compiling data, information, analysis and recommendations regarding the health, economic, financial and societal challenges posed by the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19). Please visit the dedicated OECD website for a full suite of coronavirus-related information.



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