News / Bulletins from the Executive Director of CATA, Duncan Onduru














Blockchain: The Next Frontier for Tax Administrations

The term "blockchain" is on many people’s lips and for good reason; it is a potentially transformational technology that could have as much impact as the arrival of the Internet in the 1990s. The ability to create a transparent and immutable record of transactions between parties that may not fully trust one another has obvious application to finance and financial regulation. Add to that the ability to automate transactions themselves, through "smart contracts" and you have a recipe for slashing transactional costs and reducing the need for traditional intermediaries. But what about taxation? A lot of thinking on the application of blockchain to financial markets is already underway but tax risks falling behind.

To fill this gap the Global Tax Policy Centre at Vienna University of Economics and Business initiated in March a program of work to study the impact of blockchain on taxation with a ground breaking meeting of senior tax officials, legal experts, industry specialists, technologists and academics. These initial discussions

Click to read more ...


Commonwealth Day

The Commonwealth Day was celebrated on the 13th March with a message from Her Majesty The Queen emphasizing the theme of “a peace-building Commonwealth”. Part of Her Majesty’s message read “As members of the Commonwealth family we can find much to be thankful for in the inheritance we have received from those who came before us”. At an evening reception held in Marlborough House, The Queen was represented by His Royal Highness Prince Charles.


(HRH Prince Charles mingles with delegates at Marlborough House - photo courtesy of The Commonwealth)

Full message from HM The Queen


CATA/ HMRC tax leadership course piloted in Ghana

The inaugural one-week Tax Leadership Course was piloted in Accra, Ghana for the Ghana Revenue Authority between the 7th and 10th March, 2017.  The Course was facilitated by Messrs Paul Stafford and Roger Bracken with the support of David Yellowley, Grace Sowah and Sara Bryant of the HMRC.

The Course, which is a compressed version of the annual 8-week program conducted in the UK, was being piloted for the first time with a view to exploring how it can be delivered within the regions and closer to the members. The curriculum included such important topics as “Principles of effective leadership”, “Strength Deployment Inventory” and ” Emotional intelligence and Stakeholder engagements”.

A total of 15 delegates from the Ghana Revenue Authority attended the course and the course was rated very highly by the participants. There are plans to replicate a similar program in other regions.

(Photo: kneeling front, Roger Bracken (L) and Paul Stafford (R) with delegates)



CATA welcomes Korea delegation

A delegation from Korea Tax Policy Centre recently paid a courtesy visit to the Executive Director at Marlborough House. The delegation, led by the Director General of the Tax Program Mr. Park Choon Ho, discussed wide-ranging issues focussing on the collaboration between CATA and the Korea Tax Policy Centre. Mr Choon updated the Executive Director on the preparations for the hosting of the joint Tax Workshop for the Pacific region countries scheduled for the last week of April.


CATA - ATAF consultative meeting

The Executive Director held a consultative meeting in February with a delegation from the African Tax Administrations Forum (ATAF) who called on him at the CATA offices in London. The meeting discussed and explored wide ranging areas of possible collaboration between the two organizations. Delegations from both organizations provided highlights of their current work plans and priority areas and pledged further commitment to enhance the existing relationship between their respective organizations.

The ATAF delegation was led by Ms Mary Baine, Head of International Taxation and Technical Assistance. The meeting was also attended by Mr Lucas Rutherford, the Economic Advisor and Dr Ekpen Omonbude, Advisor on Oceans and Natural Resources at The Commonwealth Secretariat, who briefed the delegation on some of the initiatives that the Commonwealth is undertaking particularly in the area of tax policy and advocacy.


CATA Welcomes the new head of the Ghana Revenue Authority

On behalf of the Management Committee and the entire membership of CATA, the Executive Director wishes to convey congratulations and good wishes to Mr Emmanuel Kofi Nti and the staff of GRA on the appointment of Mr Kofi Nti as the Commissioner General. Ghana has been a key member of CATA and has served in various capacities including holding the Presidency of the Association between 2012 and 2015. Currently Ghana is a member of the Management Committee.

We look forward to enhancing our cooperation and partnership with GRA under the stewardship of Mr Kofi Nti.

Profile of Mr Kofi Nti