Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Links Dec 19

Uruguayan Congress approves deal to fight tax evasion Reuters
Dec 18 - On "an accord that will let Argentine tax inspectors dig up information on savers with Uruguayan bank accounts to crack down on evasion and money laundering ... The OECD had urged Uruguay to strike accords to share tax information with its biggest trading partners, among them Argentina and Brazil." However, note: "Tax agents will only be able to share information in specific cases where there is a strong likelihood of evasion." See our resource page on On Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes.

Is the Isle of Man negotiating the equivalent of a Liechtenstein Disclosure Facility? Tax Research UK
Dec 19 - The Isle of Man has now agreed to implement a FATCA style agreement with the UK. Jersey and Guernsey have not. What might explain the difference in approach?

Liechtenstein FMA Seeks Stronger Ties With Switzerland Tax-News

Dec 19 - "President of the Liechtenstein Financial Market Authority supervisory board Urs Roth-Cuony has urged both countries to work together to capitalize on their respective strengths with regard to financial services."

Luxembourg, US To Conclude FATCA In 2013 Tax-News

Dec 19 - "Luxembourg’s Finance Minister Luc Frieden has announced plans to begin negotiations shortly on an inter-governmental agreement between Luxembourg and the United States, implementing the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) ... the finance ministry underscored that the inter-governmental agreement will serve to enable the country’s financial institutions to conform in all legal certainty to the new US legislation and to guarantee the competitiveness of the Luxembourg financial sector."

Questions and Answers on the Task Force for Greece Europa
Dec 17 - "As regards anti-money laundering the Greek Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) has reported 418 cases of suspected tax evasion to the tax authorities and to the tax investigation service (SDOE). Since the beginning of 2012, 267 cases relating to confirmed tax evasion have been sent to the Prosecutor´s office and assets worth €60m have been frozen."

Spain frees wanted ex-HSBC employee swissinfo
Dec 18 - "Spain’s National Court has granted conditional freedom to a former HSBC bank employee who is wanted by Switzerland for stealing confidential data on thousands of customers with Swiss accounts ... Several Spanish political parties oppose Falciani's possible extradition, saying he is helping uncover tax fraud."

UBS fined $1.53 billion for interest rate rigging swissinfo

Dec 18 - "UBS has agreed to pay approximately SFr1.4 billion ($1.53 billion) in fines to United States, British and Swiss authorities to resolve Libor-related investigations ...The charge is the latest blow for UBS, which already suffered a $2.3-billion loss in a rogue trading scandal earlier this year. In 2009, it paid a $780 million fine to settle a US tax investigation after nearly collapsing a year earlier under the weight of sub-prime losses."

Swiss, facing EU tax pressure, ponder how to attract firms Reuters

Dec 19 - "Happy Taxation" is a 2011 book by Pascal Broulis, finance minister of the Swiss canton of Vaud and celebrant of the low taxes that distinguish Switzerland. But as times get tougher, discontent about Swiss tax breaks is mounting."

France's Hollande Wants Deeper Euro-Zone Integration Wall Street Journal

Dec 14 - "France would push for deeper euro-zone integration and would be willing to use enhanced cooperation if its European Union partners raised objections, President Francois Hollande said."

Afghanistan Seeks Taxes From Contractors to U.S. Wall Street Journal
Dec 17 - "Afghanistan has launched tax audits of major contractors to the U.S. military, government officials say, in a bid to shore up the country's finances as the international military presence winds down and reconstruction funds dry up."

U.S.: Sen. Levin wants corporate tax revenue in a fiscal cliff deal Washington Post
Dec 14 -  More on a story linked earlier. "Sen. Carl Levin ... argues that corporations, too, should be contributing net revenue to deficit reduction, rather than just finding savings through entitlement programs and the small businesses who pay their taxes through the individual tax code."

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