Thursday, July 23, 2009

Channel Islands - 1.8 voluntary information transfers per year

The fabulously irreverent but hard-hitting British political-satirical magazine Private Eye has just put in a most important Freedom of Information request to find out just how much information is being exchanged through woefully inadequate "on request" systems of information exchange between jurisdictions.

We hope the Eye doesn't mind us quoting from their subscription-only magazine:

Such deals are as useful as the proverbial chocolate teapot. In the last three years the three tax havens (Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man) have between them handed over information on a taxpayer voluntarily on a total of 17 occasions. Given the hundreds of thousands of people and companies using the havens, that is not a great haul.

A back-of-the-envelope calculation puts this at 1.8 transfers of information per haven per year. Britain's revenue and customs authorities, in addition, made 141 requests - that is, 16 times a year from each haven - but we don't know the results.

Private Eye correctly notes how the secrecy jurisdictions like Jersey are using the OECD's appalling system of allowing anyone who signs 12 TIEAs to be put on their "white list."

The havens can't believe their luck . . . Those who use tax havens haven't been slow to exploit the respectability the G20 initiative gives them.

Read on. More details are provided here. We can't link to the Eye story, as it is subscription-only, unfortunately - so instead we encourage anyone with an interest in our issues with a British perspective to take out a subscription.

Oh, and one last thing. Our challenge to the Jersey authorities for a televised public debate still stands. Unfortunately, all we can hear at the moment is a distant, but distinct, cacophony of clucking.


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3:21 am  

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