Major Groups Affecting Tax Policy


World Trade Organization (WTO) Image:

World Trade Organization (WTO)

A legal professional and tax executive based in Washington, D.C., Michael Mundaca serves as co-director of the National Tax Department at Ernst & Young (EY). In his leadership role with the firm, Michael Mundaca draws upon his years of experience with tax policy formation to guide departmental strategy and in addition to advise clients.

Many factors contribute to the current political and economic climates that drive tax policy formation. In countries across the world, the recent focus on the economic effects of cross-border trading has exerted a major impact on tax and trade policy. Import taxes, also known as tariffs, are these days generally determined by agreements such as those administered by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and agreements such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the agreements among the member countries of the European Union (EU). Those agreements have recently been the subject of significant debate.

Governments establish tax and trade policy based on many different factors, ranging from efficiency and fairness to competitiveness and revenue needs. The media and members of the public advocate for various tax policies, while businesses often use trade organizations, lobbyists, and PACs to influence tax policy. Internationally, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and supranational organizations have become increasingly involved in the tax and trade policy creation of governments around the world.