Seychelles makes moves towards OECD tax information compliance at Global Forum
Money 401(K) (2012/Flickr) Seychelles is participating in the 7th Global Forum in Berlin, Germany to discuss new steps to accelerate international cooperation in tax matters. Photo License: (CC BY-SA 2.0)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychelles is preparing for the submission of a supplementary report to the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes to try to achieve compliance on tax evasion regulations for its thriving offshore financial sector.
The Seychelles Minister of Finance, Trade and Investment, Pierre Laporte, is currently at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)’s 7th Global Forum to discuss new steps to accelerate international cooperation in tax matters during a two day meeting taking place in Berlin, Germany.
The Global Forum, which brings together some 123 countries and jurisdiction plus the European Union, is the world’s largest network for international cooperation in the field of taxation and financial information exchange.
The OECD last year rated Seychelles as non-compliant in two areas in the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes, during Phase Two of the Peer Review Group rating process, raising concerns regarding the Seychelles jurisdiction’s tax transparency rules.
In October 2013, government officials stated that action would be taken to address the Peer Review Group’s concerns and push for a re-assessment.
According to a press statement issued today by the Ministry of Finance, Trade and Investment, the minister and his delegation will be meeting in the margins with Global Forum representatives to update them on the new measures put in place to address the two areas of non-compliance and prepare for the final submission of the supplementary report which will be submitted to the Peer Review group of countries for re-assessment.
Early adoption case study
Laporte will be making two representations to the 200 delegates from 95 member jurisdictions at the Global Forum, one of which will be the perspective of the first pilot study for the Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) in Seychelles, which was conducted in June. Seychelles was announced as one of the early adopters of the AEOI framework in September.
Developed by the OECD in cooperation with the G5 group of developed nations, the standard is expected to facilitate tax authorities’ access to financial information and boost worldwide efforts to crack down on tax evasion, and the G20 countries will be pushing the Global Forum member jurisdictions to move over to AEOI as soon as possible.
The G5 countries will be holding a signing ceremony on AEOI with its ‘early-adopter’ jurisdictions, including the United States, Switzerland, Jersey and Guernsey, to give effect to the new global standard.
Laporte will also address the African Leaders Roundtable event to share Seychelles’ experience with tax information exchange over the past five years within an African context, and will discuss proposed solutions for African countries to participate more inclusively in the tax information sharing process.