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Article

5 Sep 2016

Author:
Nurkholis Hidayat, The Jakarta Post

Commentary: Tax reform in Indonesia should be in line with intl. human rights standards

“Tax reform as new human rights agenda”, 30 Aug 2016

Today, we see more enthusiasm for tax reform in Indonesia…President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s administration continues to push its fiscal framework reform — which includes a tax amnesty and more incentives for taxpayers…Further, there is also plan to cut corporate tax from 25 to 17 percent. The goal of these policies is clear, to compete with other tax jurisdictions and create a larger base of taxpayers for state revenue…The critical question is whether the government’s tax reform policies are in line with the global human rights agenda on establishing fair and just taxation to maximize the state’s capacity to reduce poverty and to fulfill human rights…Research [shows] that at least two-related issues between taxation and human rights: a direct impact from operational company activities to human rights violations and an indirect impact of public revenue losses resulting in loss of state capacity to mobilize maximum resources to realize human rights…Under international human right customary laws, especially the UN Guiding Principles…,business entities should respect human rights, and the state should protect its people from the negative impacts of business interests…Indonesia’s tax reform package should also be in line with those principles.