On January 19, 2023, Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno confirmed the Philippines’ intention to join the Global Forum’s Asia Initiative.
The Asia Initiative was launched by the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes (Global Forum) in November 2021.
In line with the Bali Declaration, the Asia Initiative aims to enhance the implementation of international tax transparency standards. As a member of the Asia Initiative, the Philippines will participate in tax transparency activities and may access relevant technical assistance and capacity-building programs.
The Initiative will facilitate the exchange of knowledge and experience among members and advance the development of a regional forum fostering improved collaboration among Asian jurisdictions in the area of tax transparency.
By joining the Asia Initiative, the Philippines reaffirms its commitment to the full and effective implementation of international tax transparency of the Global Forum, as well as to use the full range of administrative cooperation allowed under the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters (MAC).
The Philippines will receive region-specific support on ongoing tax transparency projects such as the Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) and Exchange of Information on Request (EOIR).
“The Philippines would greatly benefit from joining the Asia Initiative as we will have access to custom-tailored capacity-building activities offered by Asia Initiative partners to promote international tax transparency,” said Secretary Diokno.
As a result of these tax transparency efforts, the Philippines hopes to deter international tax evasion and illicit financial flows, and ultimately raise tax revenues for the country.
The Philippines is the 17th jurisdiction to join the Asia Initiative. The other 16 are Armenia, Brunei Darussalam, People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong (China), India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Macau (China), Malaysia, Maldives, Mongolia, Pakistan, Singapore, and Thailand.