TaxPersonal TaxBlacklisted tax havens offered lifeline

Blacklisted tax havens offered lifeline

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has held out an olive branch to 35 tax havens by offering to remove the threat of economic sanctions if they sign a collective agreement to transparency and co-operation.

The OECD’s move, according to the Financial Times, is in response to accusations made by the tax havens that it was harassing them into accepting standards that the organisation’s own members were not adhering to.

The names of the 35 tax havens were included on an OECD blacklist, as part of its international campaign to crackdown on tax evasion. These countries were threatened with having favourable tax treaties scrapped if they did not co-operate by July 2001.

The OECD had originally intended to hold bilateral talks with the tax havens, but this was scrapped after complaints that the July date was too soon.

The tax havens have complained that the OECD did not explain clearly the changes they were expected to make. The most contentious issue is the demand that OECD revenue authorities have access to all tax information. The havens are willing to co-operate in criminal cases, but refuse to disclose information in civil cases.

The OECD has since softened its approach, a move which has pleased the Commonwealth which counts two-thirds of its members among the tax havens.

Meanwhile the British Virgin Islands has welcomed a KPMG report on financial regulation in the Caribbean Overseas Territories and Bermuda. The British Virgin Islands has already begun implementing a anti-money laundering code of practice and Compulsory Powers Bill to comply with the report’s recommendations.

Across the Atlantic, the US Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service have issued a notice to shut down an abusive Guam tax shelter currently being marketed. The tax shelter was set up to protect account holders from both Guam and US taxation.

Links

OECD website

Related Articles

LITRG urges government to consider tax changes in disability work plan

Administration LITRG urges government to consider tax changes in disability work plan

2d Lucy Skoulding, Reporter
HMRC appeal rejected in Tottenham Hotspur case

Administration HMRC appeal rejected in Tottenham Hotspur case

2w Emma Smith, Managing Editor
HMRC urged to clarify impact of income allowances on Self-Assessments

Personal Tax HMRC urged to clarify impact of income allowances on Self-Assessments

2m Alia Shoaib, Reporter
New trading allowance: simplicity, but not as we know it

Administration New trading allowance: simplicity, but not as we know it

2m Emma Rawson, ATT Technical Officer
Wealthy individuals could circumvent top tax rate rises

Personal Tax Wealthy individuals could circumvent top tax rate rises

4m Alia Shoaib, Reporter
Italy grants first successful non-dom status application to former UK non-dom

Personal Tax Italy grants first successful non-dom status application to former UK non-dom

4m Emma Smith, Managing Editor
Industry reaction: Taylor Review does not go far enough in addressing tax issues

Legal Industry reaction: Taylor Review does not go far enough in addressing tax issues

5m Alia Shoaib, Reporter
Does the Taylor Review sufficiently address the gig economy?

Corporate Tax Does the Taylor Review sufficiently address the gig economy?

5m Alia Shoaib, Reporter