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BVI Premier Accepts British PM's Pre-G8 Invitation

by Amanda Banks,, London

17 June 2013

Premier and Minister of Finance of the British Virgin Islands, Orlando Smith, has accepted the invitation to attend two meetings in London on June 15, hosted by UK Prime Minister David Cameron ahead of the G8 meeting.

The first meeting will see the Premier join leaders from all UK Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies in an open consultation with David Cameron. The other meeting will be a broader discussion on tax, trade and transparency, the key themes of the forthcoming G8 summit, and will involve a range of stakeholders, including representatives from Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies.

In a letter sent to Prime Minister Cameron, Smith said the BVI will in principle commit to joining the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Assistance on Tax Matters. The Convention is a multilateral agreement designed to promote international cooperation to combat tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance.

Speaking about the meeting, the BVI Premier said: "We welcome the invitation from David Cameron for consultation on these matters. I would like to reiterate my Government’s support for the G8 agenda on tax, trade and transparency and trust that the G8 members will see the value of, and accept the need for, establishing global standards."

He continued: "The BVI considers it particularly important that in order to achieve fairness and overall success on these issues, without creating competitive arbitrage, policies should be raised to the highest level of established international standards to ensure across-the-board compliance."

Smith also asserted that the initiatives are nothing new to the BVI, stating: "For many years we have implemented the highest international standards on transparency, accountability and information exchange on tax matters, as set out by the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development. The BVI will continue to be a constructive partner in evolving and setting the highest standards of regulation. We are proud of our part in the global economy and we believe that good regulation is good business."

The Chief Ministers of Jersey and Guernsey recently confirmed that they will also attend David Cameron's pre-G8 event.

TAGS: compliance | Finance | tax | business | tax avoidance | Guernsey | Jersey | Virgin Islands | standards | regulation | trade | British Virgin Islands

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