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Progress but there's a long way to go on tax

Tuesday 18 June 2013 | by Alasdair Roxburgh

Christian Aid has been campaigning on tax justice since 2008 and I began campaigning on tax justice here three years ago.

At the time, there were a handful of organisations and a few hundred active campaigners pushing the issue. Politicians were not listening, businesses were not interested. This has all changed thanks to you.

Over the years our voices have grown and the movement has swelled. More and more people have got involved in the fight to tackle tax dodging in developing countries.

In recent months this movement has gained huge momentum, with tax dodging being a key element of the Enough Food for Everyone IF campaign.

'Bighead' versions of the G8 leaders

Mass BIG IF rallies in London and Belfast, attended by tens of thousands of people, have further increased the pressure on David Cameron to take action on tax.

On Monday and Tuesday, as David Cameron chaired the G8 meeting in Northern Ireland, this pressure built to a crescendo of noise – from activists, the media, bloggers and many more - all calling for action to tackle tax dodging.

Over the two-day summit, tackling tax dodging was discussed at length – a victory in itself thanks to the pressure you have put on David Cameron.

The outcomes of the summit go some way towards tackling tax dodging, but more must be done to support poor countries in this fight.

Although the G8 has set out the right ambition on issues you have campaigned on - such as information exchange - poor countries battling hunger can’t afford to wait to be included in this.

It’s also progress that more tax authorities will know who owns phantom firms, so they can crack down on them, but a summit focused on transparency can’t justify keeping this information secret.

This summit is a step in the right direction, but more is needed in the coming months from David Cameron and other world leaders.

Your pressure has got us this far – it's put tax near the top of the political agenda – but politicians must now do more to turn their words into actions that help poor countries.

Your support is crucial for us to keep this pressure up.

Get involved

Email David Cameron and make sure the government keeps to its promises so that tax dodgers have nowhere to hide.

 

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 About the author

Alasdair Roxburgh

Alasdair Roxburgh is our churches campaigns manager