Friday, March 26, 2021
Jinyan Li (Osgoode Hall) presents Legal Challenges in Creating a Global Tax Regime with OECD Pillar One Blueprint virtually at British Columbia today as part of its Tax Law and Policy Workshop Speaker Series hosted by Wei Cui:
Like the Internet connecting the computers of the world, a global tax regime created with the OECD Pillar One Blueprint seeks to integrate and standardize national corporate taxes in respect of automated digital services and consumer facing businesses of large corporations. In this article, the author considers the various legal challenges of creating such a regime.
The Pillar One Blueprint offers tremendous insights on the political aspirations and technical innovations of those involved. In this article, the author seeks to contribute to the debates about Pillar One by highlighting some general legal challenges that are animated from underlying political, fiscal and economic concerns at a national level. Since Pillar One requires a legal basis for implementation because the Inclusive Framework has no legal authority to address tax base creation or allocation matters, legal obstacles at national levels will likely determine the fate of reaching a global consensus.
A fundamental difficulty will be that there is no true international tax law in place. It may be too ambitious to presume that divergent national tax laws can be synthesized to address the challenges of global digitalization. It may also be too optimistic to assume that Inclusive Framework members have arrived at a “constitutional moment”59 to cede their tax sovereignty to a global mechanism.