financial transparency

Civil Society FfD List Sign-on Letter: Implementation of UN Resolution on International Tax Cooperation


We invite you all to sign on to the letter, and the deadline for doing so is Friday 16 December 2022. You can find the letter here and the form to sign on is here


To the kind attention of:

Permanent Representatives and Permanent Observers to the United Nations in New York

United Nations Secretariat, Agencies and Programmes


X December 2022


Subject: Implementation of UNGA Second Committee resolution on promotion of inclusive and effective international tax cooperation at the United Nations (A/C.2/77/L.11/Rev.1)


Your Excellencies distinguished representatives of UN Member States,


We, the undersigned civil society organisations and trade unions, strongly support and welcome the UNGA resolution on promotion of inclusive and effective international tax cooperation at the UN (A/C.2/77/L.11/Rev.1). We commend the Africa Group for its excellent leadership on this issue and for finally ensuring implementation of the long-standing demand of developing countries for a UN intergovernmental negotiation process on international tax. We urge all UN Member States to maintain and reinforce the spirit of international cooperation that resulted in the adoption by consensus of this historic resolution. 


Furthermore, we are writing to you with a call for all governments to work constructively towards the urgent and efficient implementation of the resolution. This includes: 


  1. Supporting a speedy approval in the UNGA Fifth Committee of the required budget allocation for the implementation of the resolution, in line with the related Programme budget implications analysis (A/C.2/77/L.75). The budget requirement, totaling US$ 432,700, was presented to Member States ahead of the adoption of the resolution. We now count on all UN Member States to stand by the consensus agreement reached with the resolution and confirm the allocation of the required resources. We also urge all UN Member States to keep in mind that international tax cooperation is urgently needed, not least to combat tax-related illicit financial flows, which are costing governments hundreds of billions of dollars in lost tax income every year. This must therefore be a matter of high importance and urgency.


  1. Supporting strong stakeholder involvement in the consultation process related to the UN Secretary General’s report as mandated by the resolution. We strongly welcome the fact that stakeholder consultation is explicitly included in the text of the resolution, and we stand ready to make our contributions. We, the undersigned civil society organisations and trade unions, bring in-depth knowledge from all regions of the world about the devastating impacts of the failure of international tax cooperation, including the continued bleeding of public resources in the form of illicit financial flows. We also bring concrete and specific proposals for solutions, including for how a future UN Convention on Tax could be designed. 


  1. Supporting a strong intergovernmental UN process to strengthen international tax cooperation. Through the resolution, all UN Member States have agreed to “begin intergovernmental discussions in New York at United Nations Headquarters on ways to strengthen the inclusiveness and effectiveness of international tax cooperation”. We strongly welcome this vital initiative, and stress the importance of moving forward with urgency. As stated in the adopted resolution, combating illicit financial flows is an essential development challenge, and developing countries are particularly susceptible to the negative impact of illicit financial flows. Therefore, we believe that the modalities for the foreseen process must be adopted as a matter of high priority, and this should take place no later than the seventy-eighth session of the UN General Assembly. Furthermore, we would like to stress the importance of ensuring that the modalities provide for a transparent and inclusive member state-led negotiation process with full participation of stakeholders, including civil society. 


Despite the fact that international tax rules and standards affect all countries and people of the world, there has until this point been no inclusive international body where all countries were able to participate on an equal footing in the decision-making on international tax matters. This injustice is at the heart of the failure of the international tax system, which has continued to be characterised by injustice, inefficiency, incoherence, unilateral actions and beggar-thy-neighbor policies. All countries have paid a high price for this failure, but the impacts on developing countries have been particularly hard. The UN remains the only truly universal body where all countries participate as equals, and the consensus adoption of the UN resolution, including the decision to begin intergovernmental discussions on international tax matters under the auspices of the UN, constitutes a truly historical shift towards fairness and inclusivity. 

The urgency of this matter cannot be overstated. In light of the Covid-19 pandemic and the “cost of living crisis”, the fight to increase domestic resource mobilisation and combat illicit financial flows has never been more vital. In 2021, the State of Tax Justice report estimated that countries around the world are losing over US$450 billion per year due to international tax dodging and abuse by multinational corporations and wealthy individuals. Faced with the challenges of financing the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and combatting the global environmental crises, it is clear that the international community must take urgent action to strengthen international tax cooperation and stop the immense bleeding of public resources. 

We remain at your disposal if you would like to receive more information or would like to meet to discuss this issue further. 


Yours sincerely,

Civil Society Financing for Development Group (




  1. Civil Society Financing for Development (FfD) Group
  2. Global Alliance for Tax Justice (GATJ): Alliance of five continental tax and fiscal justice networks in Asia (Tax & Fiscal Justice Asia), Africa (Tax Justice Network Africa), Latin America (Red de Justicia Fiscal de América Latina y el Caribe), Europe (Tax Justice-Europe) and North America (Canadians for Tax Fairness & FACT Coalition), collectively representing hundreds of organisations. 
  3. European Network on Debt and Development (Eurodad)


Revisiting Financing for Development

In preparing to mark the 20th  anniversary of the first United Nations International Conference on Financing for Development held in Monterrey, Mexico in March 2002, a process that promised so much, it is only prudent to reflect on the history of the Financing for Development (FfD) processes, especially considering the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on efforts to curb the widening of the gap between the rich and poor, both within and among countries. During these trying times, the poor and the most vulnerable are left at the mercy of ineffective regional and global policies. We are also witnessing the erosion of personal freedoms, even within the so-called bastions of democracy. Individual and corporate greed seems to be dictating the direction of these financial policies.

In light of the pandemic and a looming global recession, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres sounded the alarm: “We must act quickly and decisively to protect people and strengthen societies in the face of this shock, which comes on top of a global climate emergency, soaring inequality and growing discontent with the economic and social order in general.”

The premise of the FfD process has been to eradicate poverty, achieve sustained economic growth and promote sustainable development in an inclusive and equitable global economic system. There needs to be a systemic transformation of the global financial architecture and global division of labor towards achieving a just, green, equitable and gender-sensitive recovery in the current and post-COVID-19 scenario.

Financial regulations that turn a blind eye toward tax-havens are indicators of the extent to which the privatization of wealth has generated today’s culture of shortsightedness. Morality is not arbitrary. The well-being of our planet and its 7.5 billion human inhabitants require a readjustment of perspective that justly distributes wealth, recognizing that shared prosperity sustains life.

As civil society organizations, we have the moral obligation, the responsibility and needed insights, and opportunities to join in advocating to change this narrative. This moment calls for a greater vision of the world that ought to be, than the empty promises of our current global social compact.  This is the time to join forces to remove the malignant growth of addiction to individual/private gain/profit and promote communal gains and wellbeing by advocating for financial structures that support collaboration, transparency, and accountability.

We, as civil society, have the ability and insight to change the narrative. Let us start by reviewing our individual and collective roles and the prospects of the FfD process to invigorate our plan of action to bring about the change for which we have been clamoring.

Register here!


CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, an official Substantive Committee of the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations, please visit Likewise, for more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit