Filter category

Feature post image

A Bite at the Apple: States’ Struggle to Tax Digital Services

Taxation might not top the agenda of the readership of EJIL:Talk!. And yet, we have all heard the chorus of mass media and policymakers decrying the tiny tax liabilities of large corporations operating in the digital economy. Does international law have nothing to contribute to this discussion? Of course it does. In fact, the international norms governing cross-border taxation have kept states very busy (and quarrelsome) in recent years. The United States and Canada are currently entangled in a diplomatic spat about the legitimacy of Canada’s impending ‘digital services tax’ (‘DST’). When 11 states took similar steps towards DSTs between 2019 and 2021, the USA was equally unhappy – and responded with threats of unilateral retaliatory tariffs under Section 301 of the US Trade Act of 1974.

Read more

How Does the Financial Sector Relate to the European Commission’s Proposal For a Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive?

In the last few years, there has been a significant momentum behind imposing mandatory obligations on multinational enterprises (MNEs) to respect human rights and the environment. In 2017, France became the first Member State of the European Union (EU) to adopt and implement legally binding obligations on MNEs with the Loi de Vigilance. Following France’s footsteps, Germany…

Read more

Of Mazes and Layers: Can a UN Convention on Tax Change the Rules of the Game?

The Maze Last month, the United Nations (UN) General Assembly’s Economic and Financial Committee (Second Committee) tabled a draft resolution calling for the elaboration of a UN convention on international tax cooperation. Lauded by civil society as “a chance of legitimate, inclusive rule-setting” the initiative is yet to be remarked on, or acknowledged by,…

Read more

Challenging the Olympic Charter at the Swiss OECD National Contact Point

In January 2020, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) issued guidelines to clarify the content of the controversial Rule 50 of the Olympic Charter (OC). Rule 50 prohibits any ‘kind of demonstration or political, religious or racial propaganda in any Olympic sites, venues or other areas’. It was introduced to the OC during the 1970s, following one of…

Read more