India has offered to make a "voluntary contribution" towards the budget of the Global Forum, a key international group mandated to strengthen transparency and exchange of information for tax purposes.
The Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes has 101 members including India. The forum also plays a key role in the G-20 nations' efforts to crackdown on tax havens, which help entities to stash away black money.
"I can confirm that India has indicated they would like to send a voluntary contribution to the Global Forum [GF]. This could allow us to have an Indian staff...," a top OECD official told PTI today.
Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is a Paris-based think tank and coordinates the activities of the Global Forum.
Presently, the Global Fourm has an annual budget of about three million euros. The budget is entirely financed by its members, ensuring that all are on an equal-footing.
"The budget is funded by the 101 members: minimum fee of 15,100 euros for small countries, progressive scale based on GDP adjusted with size of the population for countries with a GDP higher than $30 billion," the official noted.
The forum's third meeting was held in Bermuda from May 31-June 1. As many as 227 delegates from 85 members and 9 international organisations and regional groups participated in the meet.
India is a member of the Global Forum Steering Group as well as a vice-chair of the Forum's peer review group.
The latest meeting also agreed to increase the 2011 budget for the Global Forum, without raising the contributions of existing members.
"A number of member jurisdictions also agreed to provide Voluntary contributions for 2011 [that is Bermuda, Cayman Islands, France, India, Japan, Jersey, the Netherlands and Singapore]," according to the OECD.
The Global Forum, which was restructured in late 2009, has a three-year mandate to speed up implementation of countries' tax standards through peer review of all of its members and other jurisdictions that require special attention.
Further, the Global Forum would prepare a report for the G-20, summarising the progress relating to peer reviews and implementation of the internationally agreed standard.
The report to the G20 would be considered for adoption at the Global Forum's next meeting in October 2011 in France.