International Financial Law Prof Blog

Editor: William Byrnes
Texas A&M University
School of Law

Saturday, March 18, 2017

OECD announces further developments in international tax co-operation

In September 2014, Hong Kong indicated its support for implementing automatic exchange of financial account information (AEOI) on a reciprocal basis with appropriate partners with a view to commencing the first exchanges by the end of 2018. In order to exchange financial account information with a jurisdiction, Hong Kong (China) needs to have or enter into a double tax convention or tax information exchange agreement that allows for AEOI and to sign a competent authority agreement (CAA) with that jurisdiction.

Today, six treaty partners of Hong Kong (China) signed a competent authority agreement with Hong Kong (China) bringing the total number of CAAs to nine. Jurisdictions included Belgium, Canada, Guernsey, the Netherlands, Italy and Mexico (joining Japan, Korea and the United Kingdom). More agreements are expected in the coming months so that Hong Kong (China) will be able to exchange data with all interested and appropriate partners.

The Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes is monitoring the implementation of tax transparency standards to ensure the effective and timely delivery of the commitments made, the confidentiality of information exchanged and to identify areas where support is needed. It is also assisting its developing country members to ensure that they can also receive the benefits of the ongoing global move to automatic exchange of financial account information. 

Belgium, Canada, Guernsey, the Netherlands, Italy and Mexico sign competent authority agreement with Hong Kong (China).
OECD Headquarters, Paris, 16 March 2017
Photo: Andrew Wheeler/OECD

In addition, Panama today deposited its instrument of ratification for the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters ("the Convention"). By doing so, Panama underlines its commitment to fighting tax evasion and avoidance and has put in place an important pre-condition for delivering on its commitment to start exchanging Common Reporting Standard information in 2018. The Convention will enter into force for Panama on 1 July 2017.

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