12.02.13

Seychelles has nothing to hide as regards tax transparency

Posted in Financial Services, International Organisations, International relations, Seychelles offshore jurisdiction at 3:40 pm by Robert Klien

Seychelles rejected charges that it was one of the world’s 5 most secretive tax havens for the very rich, saying that it had nothing to hide.

In November, the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes listed Seychelles among 5 states that either failed to share taxpayer details with other countries or to gather information on beneficial ownership of corporate entities registered on their territory.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) that oversees the forum stated that the Seychelles failed the test because its legislation does not work well enough.

Foreign Minister Jean Paul Adam said: “Despite there being no concrete examples of non-compliance, the assessment perhaps judged that the smallness of our jurisdiction, and our capacity to regulate in relation to the fast rise of our financial services sector, represented a risk”.

He emphasized that Seychelles had a wide network of tax exchange information agreements including with 15 European jurisdictions and had complied with every request for information.

“We have made clear we have nothing to hide and have opened ourselves to the widest scrutiny possible,” said Adam.

The OECD said that international companies, banks and agencies might think twice about investing through the 5 jurisdictions. Apart from Seychelles, the list included the British Virgin Islands, Luxembourg, Switzerland, and Cyprus.

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