UK-Liechtenstein tax disclosures bring in £363m

THE LIECHTENSTEIN TAX DISCLOSURE FACILITY has already garnered HM Revenue & Customs some £363m after more than 2,400 people came forward to declare unpaid tax under the scheme.

The facility is now expected to bring in some £3bn by 2016, based on the current number of disclosures.

The countries will sign a double taxation agreement today, which aims to remove obstacles to investment and cross-border economic activity, while also closing the net on tax avoidance schemes.

It is hoped it will also provide increased certainty to businesses over their tax treatment.

Dr Klaus Tschütscher, prime minister of Liechtenstein, and Exchequer secretary David Gauke will sign the deal in London.

A third joint declaration on the memorandum of understanding on co-operation on tax matters will be signed. It is hoped this will further clarify the arrangements between the two countries, which make available at a single charge rate of 50% what Liechtenstein investors may apply to calculate undisclosed UK tax liabilities for the tax year 2010/11.

In a statement, Gauke said the government is “determined to clamp down on tax avoidance at home and abroad”.

“The UK has the largest tax treaty network in the world,” he added. “Until now, Liechtenstein was the only country in the European Economic Area we had no agreement with. This new treaty and the existing disclosure facility show that the net is closing on those who try to evade their UK tax liabilities by using offshore structures – there are fewer and fewer places to hide.”

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