Foreign Delegations Tap NYS Tax Department’s Expertise Tax Department advises recent visitors from Albania, Australia, and Bangladesh
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Drawn by the NYS Tax Department’s reputation as an international leader in tax administration, and its innovative use of technology, foreign delegations have journeyed to New York State to learn more about the department’s world-class practices.
In the span of one month this summer, tax officials from Albania, Australia, and Bangladesh met with Tax Department executive leaders and divisional teams to discuss the department’s award-winning operations. Chinese, Korean, and Indian tax officials have also visited in recent years to help hone their processes.
“All the foreign delegations who have visited us have been impressed and grateful for the opportunity to learn from our experts about how we use cutting-edge technology, online apps, and automated systems to enhance our services and efficiency,” said NYS Tax Commissioner Jerry Boone. “We, in turn, have benefited from the cultural exchange by learning about some of their unique practices.”
The contingent from the South Asian nation of Bangladesh recently met with divisional managers. Their National Board of Revenue Senior Secretary, Nojibur Rahman—a recent United Nations delegate—spoke of his desire to form an international association of tax administrators, and was thankful for New York’s willingness to share best practices as his group moves toward building their call center and adding additional features for revenue collection.
The Tax Department’s connection to Albania’s General Directorate of Taxation, meanwhile, began when the nonprofit Financial Services Volunteer Corps (FSVC), working with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), asked the Tax Department’s Executive Deputy Commissioner Nonie Manion and General Counsel Amanda Hiller to help the Republic of Albania in its mission to modernize its fledgling tax system. Both did so on their own time.
Fresh on the heels of the visit by Albanian tax officials, Australia’s Assistant Commissioner for Small Business, Judy O’Connell, visited to learn how the Tax Department uses data analytics to improve compliance, collect debt, and uncover fraud and identity theft schemes.
“Time and again we’re reminded by national and international experts that we’re at the vanguard among tax agencies; our work with Albania and other countries has been a result of that reputation,” Manion said.
The visiting delegations came away impressed by the Tax Department’s innovative use of technology, targeted tax guidance, and community outreach. Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama called the Tax Department “one of the most sophisticated and capable tax departments in the United States.”
One of the department’s tools of particular interest, for example, uses predictive analytics to determine the optimal action to take for audit purposes or to resolve debt collection cases. The same platform, developed in partnership with IBM, is used to stop suspect returns and sophisticated refund scams—saving the state millions in unwarranted refund payments.