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Gib Opposition Quizzes Government On Tax Strategy

by Jason Gorringe, Tax-News.com, London

02 December 2002


The Gibraltar Opposition last week renewed calls for clarification of the government's tax plans in the wake of the European Commission announcement with regard to the jurisdiction's Exempt Company regime.

Following the EC's demand that the scheme be phased out by 2005, the Opposition stated that when it: 'raised this question of a 2005 cut off date in the House of Assembly, the Government's reply was that there was no such cut off date. However, in the course of the court proceedings, the Commission had stated that there was indeed a cut-off date for exempt companies, that no new ones were being authorised since 2001, and that in the course of court proceedings these statements had not been questioned by the government of Gibraltar.'

The statement continued: 'The Opposition considers that the environment which the situation creates is one of confusion which must make it very difficult for service providers in the industry to advise their customers as to the fiscal structure in which they can be expected to operate in the immediate future.'

Noting that Jersey and Guernsey have recently announced plans to impose a zero rate of corporate tax in order to satisfy the European Union, the Opposition called upon the Gibraltar government to outline its plans for the future in order to reassure the financial services and other business sectors:

'[If] government is going to proceed with the removal of all corporation tax, then the distinction between tax exempt companies and other companies would vanish and the question of phasing out by 2005 would be immaterial.'


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