BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images
  • Reuters reports that the Group of 7 is set to back a global minimum corporate tax.
  • The proposal would disincentivise companies from moving countries for better tax rates.
  • It would also work in tandem with President Joe Biden's proposed corporate tax rate increase.
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

Finance ministers for the Group of 7 are set to back a new global minimum tax, according to a Reuters report. The move would potentially be a major step forward for both the Biden administration and international taxation.

According to a draft obtained by Reuters, the group supports the push for a tax by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and has a "high level of ambition" for its eventual rate.

A global minimum corporate tax would, in practice, curb multinational companies from fleeing to countries with lower tax rates. A unilateral agreement ensures that enough countries would have the same - or at least similar - taxes on companies, disincentivising companies from packing up and moving elsewhere for better taxes alone.

The global minimum tax has also emerged as a key policy for the Biden administration's Treasury Department. In her first major public address, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen called for its creation.

"Together we can use a global minimum tax to make sure the global economy thrives based on a more level playing field in the taxation of multinational corporations, and spurs innovation, growth, and prosperity," she said.

It's also a measure that would go hand-in-hand with Biden's own domestic agenda. He's proposed increasing the level of corporate taxation to 28% from 21% to offset the cost of his infrastructure package; a uniform tax in competing countries could disincentivise countries from leaving the US if that tax passes (although it'll probably be closer to 25%).

However, the US has put forward 15% - not 21% - as the tax's potential rate. Treasury officials told The New York Times that that number was a floor, but their proposal was met "enthusiastically." The draft obtained by Reuters does not have any specific numbers, according to the outlet.

Support from the G7 would mark a major step forward for the measure, indicating support from a powerful group of countries. But there's still a journey ahead before it's finalised and enacted. G7 approval could help bolster the OECD talks, and represent a first step in striking a historic agreement.

But the US is also dealing with its own tax debate domestically. Taxes are going to be a hot topic this summer, as Democrats negotiate a razor-thin majority to pass higher taxes on corporations, high-earning individuals, and wealthy investors. A global minimum tax may have to be passed in the US through legislation - something at least one Republican senator has voiced opposition to.

G7 approval does, however, indicate support abroad for Yellen's crusade to pause the taxation "race to the bottom.

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