Relevance of the OECD International VAT/GST guidelines for non‑OECD countries

Kathryn James, Thomas Ecker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


The OECD International VAT/GST guidelines (OECD Guidelines) are the most significant global attempt to coordinate place of taxation rules for cross‑border supplies of services and intangibles so that the final consumption of such supplies are effectively taxed on a destination basis. However, given that the guidelines are formally a product of the OECD, it is important to assess their relevance for non‑OECD countries which might have different constraints, challenges and needs to their OECD counterparts.

This article explores the relevance of the OECD Guidelines to non‑OECD countries by examining the rise of the VAT in non-OECD countries and highlighting some of the challenges and constraints that affect the realisation of tax and VAT reforms in these countries. It then examines the context and content of the OECD Guidelines with a view to these challenges and constraints. The article demonstrates that, although the guidelines are a significant step in the efforts to encourage global coordination on the taxation of cross-border supplies of services and intangibles, a number of technical, normative and administrative issues will require further review so that the guidelines are not merely relevant, but achievable for all countries with a VAT.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-376
Number of pages60
JournalAustralian Tax Forum
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2017


  • tax law and fiscal policy
  • OECD

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