The Bermudian Government has condemned the European Commission’s tax blacklist as “unjustified and baseless”.
Bermuda has been included as one of 30 jurisdictions on the blacklist, which consolidates national tax ‘blacklists’ as they stood six months ago and includes any jurisdiction on ten or more Member States’ list. Bermuda is currently placed on 11 EU Member States national blacklists.
Bermuda’s Minister of Finance, Bob Richards, said that at least five of the EU member states that have Bermuda on their national blacklist have not performed their obligations in one way or the other.
“Two of the five were to give beneficial recognition to the Multilateral Tax Convention in their blacklist criteria, one is still in the process of considering recognition of the Multilateral Convention, one has not kept their promise to send Bermuda documents to sign to take us off their list, one which is one of the two EU member states I earlier mentioned has not even signed up to the Multilateral Tax Convention, and one publicly announced earlier this year that it had taken Bermuda off its blacklist,” he said.
He added that it was surprising Bermuda had been labelled uncooperative and the lack of consultation meant that Bermuda could not point out that the five countries had not performed their obligations.
“A closer scrutiny of this latest development reveals something wrong with this process,” said Richards. “To be included on this new ‘uncooperative’ list, one would have to be ‘black-listed’ by ten or more EU member states, not 9, 8, 7 or 6. Why did they use 10 speaks to lack of transparency. Not all EU members agree on how they compile their blacklists.”
He said: “Bermuda prides itself in being a highly cooperative business centre and has gone the extra mile to be ahead of the curve in this respect.”
Bermuda, Blacklist, Bermuda Government, Bob Richards, Europe