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Hong Kong’s Financing Role Highlighted by Ant IPO

By Fitch Wire   Fitch Ratings-Hong Kong-29 October 2020: Robust capital raising trends in Hong Kong so far this year and the imminent IPO of China’s Ant Group, an affiliate of Alibaba Group (A+/Stable), signal the territory’s continued standing as a major financial center, says Fitch Ratings. Hong Kong’s attractiveness to Chinese firms for raising international capital, as well as its sizeable external and fiscal buffers, will help to mitigate the credit impact of a recent erosion in perceptions of its governance standards and the economic shock from the coronavirus pandemic.   Total fundraising in Hong Kong this year continues...
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China Eases Rules, Widens US$222 Billion Inbound Investment Path, Offering the Renminbi as a Safe Haven Against Global Volatility

By Zhang Shidong   China’s yuan-denominated assets will get a fresh catalyst this month from some policy measures to give foreign stock and bond managers' wider access to the capital markets. That also means exposure to the second-best Asian currency in the past 12 months.   The central bank and market regulators have streamlined approval procedures for its inbound investment schemes, known by their QFII and RQFII acronyms, from November 1. They will also let foreign investors access a wider array of assets such as over-the-counter stocks, financial and commodity futures, and hedge funds, among others.   First announced in September, authorities will...
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Voices Is Biden’s Tax Plan a Reward for the Working Class?

By Tabassum Ali   Former vice president and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s tax proposal will limit direct tax increases to just 1.9 percent of taxpayers, a significant departure from the policies and impact of major tax revisions proposed by President Trump and enacted in late 2017, according to a report from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy.   The Tax Acts and Jobs Act signed into law by President Trump was seen by many as a lopsided victory for the wealthy, banks, and corporate America, particularly financial services companies, in the form of a lower corporate rate (21 percent) and...
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Restarting Economic Growth: Where Asian Economies, IFCs Combine

By Elise Donovan   The way in which Asia’s economies, and the international financial centres they interact with, are able to re-start global growth and help other economies recover from the ravages of COVID-19, is an important topic. Learning from Asia’s experience of handling SARS and other outbreaks, and the region's rapid growth prior to the pandemic will be crucial to our understanding of how quickly global progress can happen. The role of IFCs in channelling funds to those who are able to invest in them for the strongest returns is also important - and often not given enough credit in...
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With the Road Running Out for Tax Havens, Can Luxembourg Finally Remake its Financial Sector?

By MENAFN   In a long-awaited report, the OECD recently released two blueprints of how to completely overhaul the way that multinational corporations are taxed. One of the most important elements of the proposed remodeling of the global corporate tax code would be new rules ensuring that digital companies—including tech giants such as Google and Amazon—pay tax where they carry out their business, rather than where they register subsidiaries.   This particular reform would have a significant effect not just on the companies which have for years taken advantage of legal loopholes and favorable tax regimes to slice their tax...
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Tax Committee Chair: "Citizens Demand Action and this Committee Will Be Their Voice"

By European Parliament   Parliament’s new committee on tax matters will become “the European hub for debate on tax issues”, promises Dutch S&D member Paul Tang, the committee’s newly elected chair.   What will Parliament's new committee on taxation – FISC – be focusing on?   We’re at a critical stage. Governments are now – rightly – spending billions to save lives and livelihoods. But the debts incurred will have to be repaid. After the last crisis, we made the double mistake of austerity and increased taxes on the middle class. Only the richest remained out of shot. This time...
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Hong Kong Leader seeks Beijing's Aid to Revive Economy

By Li Yan   Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-Ngor said she has sought the central government's help in finding new growth engines and fortifying existing advantages to revive the special administrative region's battered economy.   Support has been sought mainly in four areas-financial services, innovation, and technology, the aviation sector, and projects to improve people's livelihoods, Lam said in a newspaper interview days before she is expected to visit Beijing to present her proposals to the central authorities.   The new policy initiatives are also expected to be the highlight of her annual policy address this year....
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Striving for Global Tax Transparency: What is the End Game?

By Keith Brockman   Transparency continues to be at the forefront of international tax discussions. It’s the topic of articles, the focus of speeches, and the goal of the legislation.   But those discussions are tense and very divided, even among tax administrators.   Advocates for more transparency are looking to identify and minimize a perceived tax gap, including profit shifting, paying nil taxes in low tax jurisdictions, and operating in what some call tax havens.   For all the talk, there are still fundamental outstanding questions: Is everyone starting at the same place, and what is the end game?  ...