Latvia joins Poland to set Bermuda tax record straight

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Latvia has joined Poland in removing Bermuda from its list of tax jurisdictions that are ‘blacklisted’ for being uncooperative.

A statement from the government of Bermuda noted that the jurisdiction was placed on the EU’s broader list of blacklisted tax jurisdictions on the basis of work by the European Commission, which aggregated blacklists from each member state. Jurisdictions noted on a minimum of 10 member states’ own lists would be automatically blacklisted across the EU. However, Bermuda notes that while it was on 11 member states’ own lists, two of these – Poland and Latvia – have since announced that it was included in error

In Latvia’s case, Bermuda should have fallen off its own list last November, when the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance on Tax Matters came into force for the Baltic nation. This Convention would apply to any co-signatories.

Everard T. Richards, deputy premier and minister of Finance for Bermuda, said that the jurisdiction would be arguing for Bermuda to be removed from all European blacklists henceforth, given that the number of EU member states on which it is still considered ‘uncooperative’ has fallen below the EC threshold number.

“As I have indicated before, considering Bermuda’s outstanding record of signing agreements with a large number of countries, it is extraordinary that we would be labelled by the EC as ‘uncooperative’. Bermuda has signed tax information exchange agreements with countries around the world together with a multilateral Tax Convention, adding up to over 80 treaty partners. This is today’s international standard for tax cooperation and information exchange.”

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