Micah Challenge Australia Blog

 

The Micah Challenge blog is a space for discussion and debate about the issues of global poverty, faith, advocacy and justice and the Millennium Development Goals. This blog aims to provoke thought and challenge you to learn more about the issues discussed. We welcome your comments.

Micah Challenge is a global campaign of Christians speaking out against poverty and injustice. Click here to visit the Micah Challenge website.

  • The Personal Side to Tax Justice Advocacy

    Posted by Benton

    29 October, 2014

    Whenever we think of great reforms made in the past, we think of a sea of people crying out together in unison for change. We rarely think of the personal stories that led each and every one of those individuals to dedicate their time, their efforts or even their very lives to bringing about reform. However, we at Micah Challenge would like to take the time to look at the personal motivations of some of our supporters, and why is it they have developed a passion for seemingly complex topics like tax dodging & corruption. Benton Wecker is a long-time supporter of Micah Challenge, and has some really great things to say about his faith and why it has led him to participate in our upcoming Shine the Light Brisbane events. We hope you find his answers as inspiring as we did! How did you get involved with Micah Challenge? I became involved with Micah Challenge Australia in early 2009 when a good friend encouraged me to attend the annual Micah Challenge national gathering in Canberra called ‘Voices for Justice’. My wife and I made the trip for… read more

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  • The Global Call for Tax Justice

    Posted by Amanda

    27 October, 2014

    Waiting at Heathrow for plane to Australia. It’s a trip I’ve done many many times but none with this much scary significance. Christians in Australia will represent over 81, 450 people from 172 nations who have signed the Global Call – people from Vietnam, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Mongolia, Andorra, The Bahamas and China. From Slovenia, Malta, Nigeria, Romania and Suriname. It’s been wonderful to see the global response. People everywhere want to stop corruption. We all know it’s not right and in the last year, we have also taken action rather than just shrugging our shoulders in despair or blaming other people for the problem. As well as the 80,000 signatures – most of them signed in hard copy at church meetings – we have hundreds of selfies, and we have the support of the leaders of all main Christian networks – Evangelical, Pentecostal and Ecumenical – via the Open Letter. All of these actions will be prayed over, and presented to political leaders in the coming weeks. There’ll be a youth… read more

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  • The G20, Tax and Transparency

    Posted by Ben

    25 September, 2014

    The G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bankers met over the weekend in balmy Cairns. Sadly, they weren't given many opportunities to work on their tans. They were too busy discussing plans to invest in infrastructure, try to increase global economic growth, and take a few more steps to improve transparency in international finance, and increase the prospects for countries trying to get multinational companies to pay their fair share of tax. Their communiqué doesn't include any major breakthroughs, but there has been progress on the A-B-Cs of tackling tax dodging. So I thought it would be worth taking some time to sketch the progress we've seen so far, and highlight why it's still vital for people to be active in campaigning on these issues. (Image source: www.abc.net.au) Automatic Exchange of Information – which will help to catch and limit people's use of overseas investments and accounts to avoid tax – has been adopted as the new global standard. It's not quite the "end to banking secrecy" trumpeted by… read more

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  • Another Step Forward in Tackling Tax Dodging

    Posted by Ben

    10 September, 2014

    Finding a place to stash illict funds, or avoiding tax by hiding money overseas, just got a little bit harder. Last week, the Treasurer announced that Australia will join other countries in implementing the new global standard for the Automatic Exchange of Information on Tax Matters. The OECD and G20 have been working on a global standard for the Automatic Exchange of Information on Tax Matters (AEOI) which means that countries are able to automatically receive information when any of their citizens set up bank accounts or make investments in another country. International experience has shown that AEOI cuts down on tax dodging by wealthy individuals and corporations. With appropriate privacy safeguards, AEOI makes it much easier for countries to identify people and businesses making use of legitimate international banking needs and what may be illegitimate tax evasion. Developing countries lose an estimated $1 trillion each year through illicit outflows – that is, money that was illegally earned, transferred or utilised. A significant proportion of this… read more

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