Tax havens that help evaders, and enjoy high levels of per capita income for their own small populations as a result, are parasitic.
This uses the same word employed by an aide to the German Finance Minister in another, longer FT story today looking at the Liechtenstein Affair.
these countries are slowly realising they need to reinvent themselves as normal – as opposed to parasitic – economies. Yet by doing so they would be destroying their very business model.
As indeed these places are: parasitic. They are not creating wealth, they are appropriating it, using secrecy. Swiss bankers say in private that without secrecy, they cannot compete. As we have argued elsewhere, these places are not spurring entrepreneurship or innovation: they are spurring crime and corruption.