09/07/2021 - A training seminar for French speaking jurisdictions was jointly organised by the Global Forum Secretariat and the African Tax Administration Forum (ATAF) on the standard of transparency and exchange of information on request (EOIR) and on the related peer review process. Held virtually from 5 to 9 July 2021, it was attended by 36 participants from 16 jurisdictions, including 13 African countries.
The seminar built awareness on all the requirements of the EOIR standard, with a specific focus on the availability of the beneficial ownership information and of the practice of the EOIR, which are two essential parts of the standard. The seminar also explained how to plan for, and participate in an EOIR peer review as both an assessed jurisdiction and a Global Forum expert assessor. With the help of the Global Forum Secretariat and an ATAF expert, the participants simulated, in practical sessions, the critical steps of the EOIR peer review process such as the onsite visit and the drafting of recommendation, on both the legal framework and the practical implementation of the standard. The seminar ended with an experience sharing session during which three African jurisdictions, which have already been reviewed with successful outcomes, highlighted the good practices to be followed for a successful peer review.
The peer review process is one of the core activities that the Global Forum carries out to assess the implementation of transparency and exchange of information standards. The EOIR peer reviews were launched in 2010 and the Global Forum is currently conducting the second round of reviews with enhanced terms of reference. Overall, more than half of the Global Forum members (86 out of 162) have been reviewed in the second round of EOIR peer reviews, including five jurisdictions only on their legal frameworks due to the COVID-19 related travel restrictions. The Global Forum also runs a capacity building programme to support its members in implementing the standard.
This seminar is part of a broader effort by the Global Forum and its partners to ensure through regional initiatives such as the Africa Initiative that developing countries and other jurisdictions have the tools needed to properly implement the EOIR standard, to contribute, as peers, to the EOIR peer review process and to use transparency as a driver of domestic resources.
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