Wednesday, December 9, 2009
The government of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) took a further step on December 7 to conclude Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) model Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEAs), signing texts with Ireland and China.
The agreements were signed by Premier and Minister of Finance, Ralph O’Neal, Ireland’s Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Bobby McDonagh, and Chinese Deputy Commissioner of the State Administration of Taxation, Qian Guanlin. The two agreements bring the territory's tally of such agreements to 17.
The TIEA allows the signing parties to request information from each other that is relevant to a tax investigation. As provided in the agreement, such information would typically relate to bank accounts or the beneficial ownership of companies or trusts.
Commenting after the signing of the agreements, O’Neal remarked that they were a significant milestone in bilateral cooperation between China and the British Virgin Islands, and also with Ireland.
“The BVI has now signed 17 TIEAs with economically significant parties, surpassing the international standard of 12 TIEAs set by the OECD and demonstrating the territory’s continuing commitment to best practices,” O’Neal noted.
To date, the BVI has signed TIEAs with China, Ireland, the Netherlands, the Netherland Antilles, Aruba, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, France and the Nordic council countries of Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Iceland, the Faroes and Greenland.