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Australia-Bermuda TIEA Comes Into Force

by Mary Swire,, Hong Kong

12 October 2007

Australia's Minister for Revenue and Assistant Treasurer, Peter Dutton has announced that the Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) between Australia and Bermuda has entered into force.

Commenting on the agreement, which came into force late last month, Dutton stated: "This is the first of our TIEAs to come into force, and represents a significant step in Australia's efforts to prevent offshore tax evasion and avoidance."

The TIEA provides for full exchange of information on criminal and civil tax matters between Australia and Bermuda. It has effect from 1 January 2006 with respect to serious tax evasion and, from 1 January 2008 for all other matters covered by the Agreement.

Dutton commended Bermuda for its continuing leadership in this area, demonstrated by its willingness to implement the higher standards of transparency and information exchange to which it has committed.

Bermudian Finance Minister Paula Cox and Australian Treasurer Peter Costello signed the information exchange agreement in Washington DC in 2005.

Australia is pursuing a comprehensive TIEA negotiation programme with a number of offshore jurisdictions. It is expected further TIEAs will come into force in 2008.

Australia has also signed a TIEA with the Caribbean jurisdiction of Antigua & Barbuda, while the Australian Tax Office (ATO) has held talks with the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Grenada, Guernsey, Jersey, the Isle of Man and the Netherlands Antilles with a view to completing tax information exchange agreements with those jurisdictions.

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