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Five EU Countries Agree To Share Beneficial Ownership Data

Friday, April 15, 2016

France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK have agreed to exchange data held on beneficial ownership registers and registers of trusts.

This pilot project, initiated by the UK, will explore the best way for countries to share this information, with a view to developing a global common standard and interlinking national registers. The five countries have suggested that the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, together with the Financial Action Task Force, develop the recommended standard.

The UK Government said the global exchange of beneficial ownership information would compound the effectiveness of the new Common Reporting Standard (CRS). More than 90 countries are expected to automatically exchange taxpayer financial account information under the CRS, beginning in 2017. The UK's register of company beneficial ownership will go live in June 2016.

UK Chancellor George Osborne said: "Britain will work with our major European partners to find out who really owns the secretive shell companies and trusts that have been used as conduits for evading tax, laundering money, and benefiting from corruption."

He added: "No single country can tackle international tax evasion alone – and Britain should never fool itself into thinking it can do this by itself."

Ministers from each country have written to their counterparts in the G20 to call for greater cooperation on the exchange of beneficial ownership information. They stressed that any global initiative "should cover the robust identification of beneficial ownership, the range of entities and arrangements which should be covered by such exchange, timing of exchange, and wider exchange procedures."

"This new initiative will take a significant step forward in improving the transparency of beneficial ownership and in removing the veil of secrecy under which criminals operate," the letter argued. It added that the signatories are "willing to ensure the effective implementation of the exchange of information standards and to deal with non-cooperative jurisdictions on the basis of an international list and through defensive measures."

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The Report

Offshore Trusts Guide: Introduction

The History of Offshore Trusts
Development of Professional Competence in the Jurisdictions
What Future for the Trust?
The New Age of Transparency
The Swiss Association of Trust Companies
The Society of Trusts and Estates Practitioners

Offshore Trusts Guide: Jurisdictions

Bahamas

Bahamas: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Bahamas: 2006 Private Trust Companies Legislation

Barbados

Barbados: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Barbados: Supervisory and Licensing Regime and Fees

Bermuda

Bermuda: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Bermuda: Supervisory and Licensing Regime and Fees

British Virgin Islands

British Virgin Islands: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
British Virgin Islands: Special Trusts Act 2003
British Virgin Islands: The Trustee Act 2003
British Virgin Islands: :Supervisory and Licensing Regime and Fees
British Virgin Islands: New Laws on Private Trust Companies
British Virgin Islands: New Private Trust Company Regulations

Cayman Islands

Cayman Islands: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Cayman Islands: Supervisory and Licensing Regime and Fees

Cook Islands

Cook Islands: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Cook Islands: Supervisory and Licensing Regime and Fees

Cyprus

Cyprus: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Cyprus: Supervision, Licensing and Tax

Gibraltar

Gibraltar: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Gibraltar: Legislation, Regulation and Supervision

Guernsey

Guernsey: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Guernsey: Trusts Law 2007

Isle of Man

Isle of Man: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Isle of Man: Supervisory and Licensing Regime
Isle of Man: Uses Clients and Tax Treatment

Jersey

Jersey: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Jersey: Supervisory and Licensing Regime
Jersey: Trusts Amendment Act 2006
Jersey: Foundations

Liechtenstein

Liechtenstein: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Liechtenstein: Regulation Supervision and Transparency
Liechtenstein: Characteristics of Liechtenstein Trusts
Liechtenstein: Foundations

Madeira

Madeira: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees

Malta

Malta: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Malta: The Trust and Trustees Act 2004

Mauritius

Mauritius: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Mauritius: Characteristics of the 2001 Trusts Act
Mauritius: Additional Provisions of the 2001 Trusts Act
Mauritius: Tax Treatment

Monaco

Monaco: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees

Nevis

Nevis: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees

Panama

Panama: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Panama: Requirements for Acting as Trust Company in Panama

Seychelles

Seychelles: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees

Turks & Caicos

Turks & Caicos: Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees
Turks & Caicos: The Voidable Dispositions Ordinance

Vanuatu

Vanuatu Legal Framework and Formation Rules and Fees




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