MCC’s input to International Tax Dialogue
At a high-level conference, initiated by OECD, IMF and others, the institute highlighted carbon pricing as a strategy for protecting environment and growth alike.
Taxes are potentially among the most effective ways of cutting pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, but they are currently – with very few exceptions – underused; and even where used, they are frequently designed in a sub-optimal way. Addressing this issue was the aim of the International Tax Dialogue (ITD), a joint initiative of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the European Commission (EC), the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank Group and the Inter-American Center of Tax Administrations (CIAT).
The Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change (MCC) contributed to this high-level conference with 300 senior tax and environment policymakers, tax administrators and experts from more than 90 countries in Paris by highlighting that revenues from carbon pricing could be a crucial element for financing sustainable infrastructure and that in a multilevel government setting, taxes allow expressing national preferences without undermining overall efficiency.
MCC Director Ottmar Edenhofer, who is also Chief Economist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), presented his views in the closing session with Dušan Mramor, Minister of Finance in Slovenia, and Pascal Saint-Amans, Director at the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration at the OECD about coherent strategies for environmental tax reform and growth. Edenhofer labelled the European Union as a “laboratory for international negotiations” and pointed out some lessons-learned from the EU experience for the global level.
MCC Secretary General Brigitte Knopf, furthermore, chaired the session “Carbon Pricing – Towards COP21” where speakers laid out their perspectives – ranging from establishing a global carbon price to rather define policy packages - for the important climate change negotiations in Paris by the end of this year.