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‘Sars official to chair tax forum’

Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan congratulated the SA Revenue Service (Sars) on Friday after one of its officials was elected chairman of a global tax forum.

He said Sars chief legal and policy officer Kosie Louw was elected chairman of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes, during a meeting in Cape Town last weekend.

He will hold the post for two years, starting from 2013.

“I am certain that the two years of South Africa’s chairmanship will be beneficial not only to the forum but also to the wider global tax administration community,” Gordhan said in a statement.

“The position of forum chair is especially important because the forum’s current mandate expires in 2015, and it is during SA's tenure that a decision must be made on the best way to take the work of the forum forward.”

He said South Africa's tenure on the forum “coincided with very challenging times” for tax administrations globally, especially with regards to the exchange of information for tax purposes.

“South Africa fully supports the work of the forum whose peer review report 'reflects a very good practice in exchange of information',” Gordhan said.

“Governments have an obligation to create an environment conducive to economic growth and job creation, and to ensure that the benefits that come from that growth are shared broadly. If this does not happen, we will be responsible for creating more inequality,” he said. - Sapa

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