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The meeting of the Heads of Tax Authorities of the BRICS countries, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa was held yesterday. The meeting was hosted by the Federal Tax Service of Russia, which currently holds the BRICS Presidency, to discuss the response of BRICS Tax Authorities to the COVID-19 pandemic and to explore potential areas of cooperation in tax matters.
 
The meeting was scheduled to be held in Moscow, but was held through video conference in view of COVID-19. Finance Secretary Ajay Bhushan Pandey represented India at the meeting.
 
Finance Ministry in a statement said that during the meeting, Dr Pandey shared with other BRICS nations, various measures taken by India to mitigate the effect of the pandemic on the taxpayers. He also urged the BRICS nations to share COVID-19 related tax measures taken by their tax administrations to enhance their understanding of the fiscal and economic impact of the pandemic.
 
The Finance Secretary, while extending India’s support to the ongoing work in Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development and G-20 project on addressing tax challenges posed by digitalization, underlined the need to ensure that the new tax rules are fair and simple. He said, it should also be flexible enough to cover new and emerging business models.
 
Dr. Pandey also highlighted the need for adopting a Whole of Government Approach in dealing with cross-border financial crimes. He urged the BRICS countries to agree for wider sharing of information exchanged under tax treaties for countering corruption, money laundering and terrorist financing.



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