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Malaysia DTA Further Evidence Of NZ's Tax Transparency

Monday, November 12, 2012

New Zealand and Malaysia have signed a protocol to amend their current double tax agreement (DTA), a deal New Zealand's Revenue Minister Peter Dunne says will better equip both jurisdictions to exchange tax information and combat tax evasion.

The protocol was signed on November 6, and is the third protocol to the original 1976 agreement. It updates the exchange of information article and sets out the obligations on each jurisdiction.

Announcing the deal, Peter Dunne said that DTAs reduce tax impediments to cross-border income-earning, thereby making New Zealand a more attractive place to invest. The treaty with Malaysia is the latest in a series of anti-evasion initiatives undertaken by New Zealand.

Last month, Dunne dismissed claims that the country is a tax haven for foreign trusts, arguing that its signature of the Convention on Mutual Administration Assistance in Tax Matters made a mockery of tax haven assertions. He also committed the government to negotiating a Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act tax information agreement with the US.

“All these initiatives give us greater exchange of information to root out and eradicate tax evasion. Tax havens and evasion cannot exist in the bright searchlight of such information exchanges. In the global fight against tax evasion, the New Zealand government takes its responsibilities very seriously and has been very active in this area. We will continue to explore further opportunities to clamp down on evasion,” Dunne said.