IOTA Webinar on Risks of the Digital Economy

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The IOTA Webinar on Risks of the Digital Economy: Analysis, Control Measures and Development of Methods took place on 28th May 2021, with 260 registrations from 33 countries. The objective of this webinar was to exchange good practices and share experiences among IOTA member tax administrations relating to the latest trends and solutions tax administrations are exploring to keep pace with the digital revolution.

As a result of the rapid and continuous development of digital technology, new business schemes and economic operators are emerging constantly. Digital technologies enable businesses to operate across borders easier and faster, which presents a major challenge for any tax administration. Experts from three IOTA member countries shared their thoughts and experiences on how to access information now and in the future, new business models and actors, products and services, control measures, and the development of methods.

The first presentation of the webinar by Yannic Hulot from Belgium addressed the topic ’Transactional network analysis: administrative cooperation & advanced analytics in a unique tool’. He is currently General Advisor at the Special Tax Inspectorate in Brussels and was recently elected as Chair of Eurofisc, the multilateral warning system of the EU Member States for combating VAT fraud. In his presentation, Mr. Hulot explained the main principles and functionalities of the Transactional Network Analysis developed in the Belgian tax administration and demonstrated several practical examples of using the system for risk identification and further analysis.      

Next, Maria Almon (Swedish Tax Agency) spoke about ’Benefits of auditing digital platforms jointly’. She showed how tax administrations benefit from international administrative coopereation by the use of simultaneous tax audits for the control of a global economy platform.

The third and fourth presentations were delivered by speakers from the United Kingdom. Dr. Tony Gradwell spoke about the strategic work of the HMRC Futures Team during his presentation titled ’Strategic Foresighting and the Digital Economy’. Following, Alex Brackley shared the HMRC’s experiences on ’Identification and Assurance of the Digital Economy’, by giving an overview of data gathering powers, new methods and technological tools (commercially available s and self-developed products) the HMRC is using for effective identification and treatment of businesses operating in the Digital economy (e-commerce, sharing economy, etc.).

The webinar concluded with a Q&A session, where participants got the chance to ask in-depth questions about the four presentations.

The recording of the webinar as well as the presentations are available for IOTA member tax officials on the event’s webpage.