A simmering showdown between the UN and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation & Development (OECD) over who should set global tax rules came to a head recently when an overwhelming majority of countries voted in favour of a UN framework tax convention. Strong backing from countries in the global south ensured the success of the General Assembly resolution, with 125 countries supporting and 48 opposing. Nine abstained.

The developing countries backing the resolution say it will ensure a much more inclusive rules-setting body. They are, it seems, heartily fed-up with their marginalised “guest status” on the various OECD initiatives, which they believe have made little or no progress in dealing with the $480bn of annual global tax losses...

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