Working with other government agencies in Australia and abroad

Reflecting the increasing expectations of the community for joined-up government, we work closely with policy agencies, Treasury in particular, and service delivery partners, including the Department of Human Services, the Digital Transformation Office and the ACNC (see program 1.5 for more information).

Our work with other agencies is typically managed through memorandums of understanding (MOUs). We currently have 119 MOUs in place, with 12 new and 10 updated MOUs entered into during 2015–16, including:

  • a new MOU with the Department of Education and Training to exchange data on trade support loans
  • a new multi-party agreement outlining governance, objectives, principles and broad areas of agreement for the Multi-agency Data Integration Project
  • a new MOU with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet detailing services that the Behavioural Economics Team of the Australian Government will provide to the ATO
  • a new MOU with the Australian Electoral Commission, which provides the ATO with data for the purposes of identifying or locating taxpayers and preventing, detecting or investigating tax fraud.

The community's desire for tax simplification is a key driver in our work with Treasury. To support the development of the Tax White Paper, which culminated in the package announced in Budget 2016–17, we provided dedicated resources (including an officer seconded to Treasury as a member of its taskforce).

We also commissioned an external review of complexity in policy and law design, drawing out the drivers of tax system complexity from the perspective of the various participants in the system. This will help inform the development of longer-term methodologies for tax policy development in Australia.

Economic globalisation has made collaboration, including data and intelligence sharing with overseas tax administration increasingly important. The OECD's Forum on Tax Administration and its associated Joint International Taskforce on Shared Intelligence and Collaboration Network are important forums for facilitating collaboration between tax administrations on a broad range of global taxation issues.