One of the challenges often mentioned by foreign investors when entering African markets is the sometimes scarce and complex access to data, legislation and general information from local governments.
A mishap leading to a lack of compliance can generate fees and penalties that could often have been addressed in the project’s budget, but that is certainly not the case in operations with international exposure. Companies dealing with commodities and natural resources, particularly in the Oil and Gas sector can quickly find themselves in complex legal situations elsewhere in the world due to a sometimes simple compliance issue in Africa. A compliance issue in a prospect field in Africa can reflect in an acquisition in America or an off-take agreement in Asia.
Keeping up with legal updates in Africa have been traditionally a challenge to Oil and Gas companies, particularly as some of countries are still in the early stages of development of their own laws while investments are being prospected.
Global Tax Update (GTU), a legal tech startup specialised in the Oil & Gas Industry, has recently announced the launch of a new international tax tool, called GTU OnDemand, which is set to address and revolutionise the way companies in the sector deal with tax compliance in Africa (as well as Latin America). The Oil & Gas industry has always been known for its complex – and at times convoluted – tax regimes. With that in mind, GTU specifically tailored GTU OnDemand to cater for a wide range of clients, mainly the largest Oil & Gas players in the market but also Oil & Gas suppliers, law firms, universities and consultancy businesses.
GTU OnDemand provides access to the largest online store of translated tax legislation to date, where subscribers find continuously updated tax legislation briefings, aided by both Artificial Intelligence and a team of experts in the field, who analyse, interpret and translate the information gathered – in real time – reshaping it all into a simplified, cohesive daily package, which then helps its subscribers better navigate the meandering environment of tax regulations in the Oil & Gas industry. The translated norms and regulations can also be accessed in their original language, if so desired.
Global TaxUpdate was developed upon a previous product, TaxUpdate, which catered to the Brazilian market in a similar fashion, with a track record of over 10 years of success. In 2018, the company branched out of its Brazilian matrix and established itself in Lisbon, where it has since then become one of the most promising legal tech startups to look forward to.
At the launch of GTU OnDemand, André Teixeira, Global TaxUpdate founder and CEO, said, “Our aim is to make it easier to access reliable tax information, no matter what the industry. Finding tax legislation in the correct language can be a grueling task, which often requires consultation with translation software or legal translation services. We decided to set-up OnDemand because we felt that everyone, from students to business decision makers, should have access to our translated documents. With global business becoming more and more interconnected and regulations more global, our customers demand access to accurate content from across the globe. GTU OnDemand provides them with this,”