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NEWS: Council of the European Union adds Bahamas and Turks & Caicos to its Tax Haven blacklist

By Elizabeth Hearst for AMLi

The Council of the European Union has added the Bahamas and Turks & Caicos Islands to its list of “non-cooperative” tax jurisdictions.

In its latest publication, the Council of the European Union has also placed Anguilla back on the list, just one year after it was removed.

The body says it “underlines the importance of promoting and strengthening tax good governance mechanisms, fair taxation, global tax transparency and fight against tax fraud, evasion and avoidance, both at the EU level and globally.”

The Council also says it welcomes the progress of relevant jurisdictions through the “active steps” taken by the agreed deadlines by the Code of Conduct Group. 

The body also “regrets that Turkey has not made any progress with one Member State”, and “reiterates its call on Turkey to begin or continue the effective exchange with all Member States and to fully comply with the requirements set in the conclusions of the ECOFIN Council.”

The group found that the Bahamas facilitates “offshore structures and arrangements aimed at attracting profits without real economic substance by failing to take all necessary actions to ensure the effective implementation of substance requirements” under criteria set out. 

While, Anguilla is also waiting for a “supplementary review” by the Global Forum in relation to the Exchange of Information on Request. 

In November 2016, the Council of the European Union mandated the Code of Conduct group with the screening of 92 jurisdictions selected on the basis of their economic ties with the EU, their institutional stability and the importance of the country’s financial sector. 

In 2017, the list included 17 non-EU countries or territories, which were deemed to have “not made sufficient commitments in response to the EU’s concerns.”

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