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Guernsey Leading Field In Tax Cooperation With Africa

by Jason Gorringe, Tax-News.com, London

27 September 2011


The States of Guernsey is set to conclude a further six bilateral Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEAs) that have been negotiated with members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), in line with the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s priority of working closely on tax issues with developing countries.

Guernsey’s Director of Income Tax, Rob Gray, negotiated the TIEAs at a September 2011 meeting of the SADC in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Guernsey is at the forefront of negotiating with SADC members, and before the meeting in Johannesburg had already signed a bilateral TIEA with South Africa and concluded negotiations on a bilateral TIEA with Mauritius. The further six TIEAs negotiated at the meeting are with Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Seychelles, Swaziland and Zambia.

Guernsey’s Director of Income Tax, Rob Gray said:

“The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s Global Forum has emphasized the importance of working with developing countries and sharing expertise and best practice on tax transparency. Guernsey is delighted to be among the first to demonstrate a real commitment to doing that.

“We have a strong working relationship with South Africa. South Africa promoted these discussions with SADC, and it is hoped that this will be the start of wider engagement with countries in the African continent. Guernsey is well-placed to lead the way in such negotiations – indeed we already have a bilateral TIEA negotiated with Kenya.”

Ron van der Merwe, Chair of the Tax Agreements Working Group of the SADC, said:

"The multi-party TIEA negotiations between six SADC member states and Guernsey is considered to be a major step forward in creating a basis for exchange of information for SADC members. This was a first opportunity for SADC and it is hoped that it will be the start of an ongoing programme in the negotiation of TIEAs by member states."

Chief Minister, Lyndon Trott commented:

“This week at the (UK) Liberal Democrat Party Conference Guernsey was lauded for leading the way in our engagement with the UK. Our presence on the international stage is much broader than that. The work of the Guernsey Income Tax team with developing nations in Africa as well as G-20 and EU nations shows how Guernsey’s international identity continues to evolve in a highly positive way.”

TAGS: South Africa | tax | business | offshore confidentiality | tax information exchange agreement (TIEA) | Mauritius | Swaziland | law | banking | international financial centres (IFC) | Guernsey | Lesotho | Malawi | offshore | offshore banking | Botswana | Kenya | Zambia | Seychelles | Africa

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