The 2012 annual conference of the Task Force on Financial Integrity and Economic Development will take place at the Ramada Plaza Tunis in Gammarth, Tunisia, from October 17-18.
Illicit financial outflows from developing countries – which total around $1 trillion per year – undermine the tax base in poorer countries, eroding the accountability that is essential for good governance and global stability. Fiscal accountability is a key component of a well-functioning social contract, both of which have been absent in many countries in the Middle and North Africa (MENA) region, including Libya, Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen and Syria. MENA countries have experienced the highest average annual illicit outflows of any region: $146 billion. Establishing transparent financial systems helps secure democracy and avoids a return to authoritarian rule.
Speakers and panelists at this year’s conference will address a number of topics related to the implications of and solutions to the shadow financial system, including: country-by-country reporting, beneficial ownership of accounts, automatic exchange of tax information, curtailment of trade mispricing, and anti-money laundering. Breakout sessions will focus on stolen asset recovery, transparency in the oil sector, human consequences of financial opacity, and harnessing technology to increase transparency. The conference will conclude with a civil society workshop focused on conducting advocacy of the issues discussed at the conference. Together, speakers and participants will craft a public message to the MENA heads of state and the global community on how they can increase financial transparency to support the transition to greater accountability and prosperity.
Disclaimer: Unless specifically stated to be the views of the Task Force, the opinions expressed on this blog are solely the opinions of the individual blogger and are not necessarily those of the Task Force on Financial Integrity & Economic Development.