The South Pacific nation of Vanuatu will have replaced its company law
secrecy provisions which enable the creation of companies with hidden owners and
undisclosed cash deposits by the end of the year.
The decision follows the arrest last week of Vanuatu-based former Australian
accountant Robert Agius, and principal of PKF Vanuatu, who is accused of
masterminding Australia’s biggest tax scam, involving more than 400 people, some
at the highest echelons of Australian business.
George Andrews, Vanuatu Financial Services Commission spokesman, told
The Australian newspaper that, under proposed new legislation, the
Pacific nation would crack down on all Vanuatu businesses which provided
foreigners with local tax-haven accounts.
‘If you have dealt with PKF Vanuatu over the last 10 years be concerned, be
very, very concerned,’ a senior federal police officer warned in the wake of the
raids, which formed part of Project Wickenby, the joint Australian Federal
Police and Australian Taxation Office investigation.
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