Website of the Month: Worldwide-tax.com

By Susan B. Anders

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DECEMBER 2005 - Worldwide-tax.com is designed to offer comprehensive international tax and financial information for business professionals, such as corporate managers and CPAs engaged in international business. The site currently provides information on 23 countries. Most of the information is free, and the site covers its cost with advertisements.

While some resources are available elsewhere, this website is a good resource for anyone interested in conducting business in the countries covered. The odd organization of the homepage, however, may slow down the first-time user. The site map, accessed through a link at the top of all the main pages, is faster. The most extensive resources can be reached via a general topic or a specific country search.

The simple design masks the level of information available on this site. Worldwide-tax.com is organized around the available countries, supporting service providers, and international business and tax links. The homepage is designed with the important links for “shortcuts to countries,” “world directories,” “business opportunities,” “news,” “miscellaneous,” and “odds & ends” presented in a left-hand horizontal menu.

The center of the homepage presents an odd mix of materials. “History of taxation” is a fairly minimal resource. That particular link, and some other items, such as “bookkeeping—basic course,” “tax news,” “tax links,” and “other links,” could be moved to the left side of the page to reduce clutter. “Tax rates around the world” is an excellent quick reference and should be given more prominence. Other links, including “embassies & consulates,” “tourism guides,” and “world stock exchanges,” provide important information, but they should be in the left-hand index. “News—general & economics” and “world business opportunities” are listed on the left-hand menu and do not need to appear in the center of the homepage.

Specific Country Information

The individual country pages are the real gems of worldwide-tax.com. They are a must-see for CPAs and managers that are new to conducting business in a country, as well as for frequent business travelers. Each country’s webpage includes a flag, a map, and a well-organized index of materials, as well as details on territory and population, main cities, national holidays, currency, and business hours. Tax professionals will find the individual country summary tax information helpful on individual and corporate income taxes, tax rates, capital gains, reporting dates, and estimated tax payment and withholding requirements. Worldwide-tax.com also lists sources of tax-exempt income and types of individual and business tax deductions. Basic information on other taxes, such as the value-added tax, is featured, as well as news on recent tax changes.

Global Information

The website provides a number of tools that should interest CPAs involved in international business, as well as corporate managers and accounting students. The “world directories” page groups accountants and tax experts by individual country. Most entries have websites in English and also have English-speaking employees.

“Embassies & consulates” is a well-developed feature and can be accessed from the homepage. The “world stock exchanges” page offers connections to 20 stock exchanges. Other useful resources include links to the Moores Rowland International Business and Tax Guides and to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). “Tax links” provides a connection to the IRS Income Tax Treaties webpage, and the “bookkeeping—basic course, lesson 11” on value-added tax accounting is also worth a look.


Susan B. Anders, PhD, CPA, is an associate professor of accounting at St. Bonaventure University, St. Bonaventure, N.Y.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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