What journalists need to know about taxation

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Nairobi, May 2016 — The African Media Initiative is collaborating with Oxfam to deepen journalists’ understanding of the extractive industries such as oil and related issues. In a report it launched recently, Oxfam focuses on the oil production sharing model proposed for the Kenyan market and the likely loopholes that might result in massive revenue losses for the country.

The report, Potential Petroleum Revenues for the Government of Kenya: Implications of the proposed 2015 Model Production Sharing Contract, highlights taxation as a key concern, indicating that most of the companies contracted for work in the oil region of northern Kenya have subsidiaries in tax havens.

A forthcoming workshop in South Africa promises to widen the discussion and give journalists additional knowledge on the taxation issue. The June 27-29 workshop on taxation, illicit financial outflows (IFFs) and their implications for Africa’s development, is organized by Tax Justice Network – Africa in partnership with the Centre for Film and Media Studies and the Open Society Foundation of South Africa. It will be held at the University of Cape Town.

According to the call for applications (which closed on May 31), the workshop “is aimed at filling a critical gap in African journalism that looks intuitively and comprehensively at tax issues on the continent.

“The objective of this training continues to be to improve the understanding of African media and enable especially business journalists who focus on finance reporting to take a keen interest in accurately and adequately reporting on taxation, Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs), the general tax justice agenda and their linkages to the broader structural transformation of Africa’s economies. “

AMI’s senior advisor, Wangethi Mwangi, sees the training workshop as a fitting complement to the organization’s agenda of establishing networks of subject specialists that can help deepen society’s understanding of issues that are critical to Africa’s development.