Today the Council of the European Union removed Barbados, Grenada, the Republic of Korea, Macao SAR, Mongolia, Panama, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates from the EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions in taxation matters. This follows commitments made by these jurisdictions to improve their tax regimes since the list was published in December 2017.
The eight jurisdictions are, therefore, moved from Annex I of the conclusions (non-cooperative jurisdictions) to Annex II (cooperation with respect to commitments taken).
Consequently, this decision leaves 9 jurisdictions on the list of non-cooperative jurisdictions out of 17 announced initially on 5 December 2017. American Samoa, Bahrain, Guam, Marshall Islands, Namibia, Palau, Saint Lucia, Samoa and Trinidad and Tobago remain on the list.
Vladislav Goranov, minister for finance of Bulgaria, which currently holds the Council presidency welcomed the update. “Our listing process is already proving its worth,” Goranov said.
Goranov said the EU list is intended to promote good governance in taxation worldwide, maximising efforts to prevent tax avoidance, tax fraud and tax evasion with the consequence to encourage jurisdictions around the world to make commitments to reform their tax policies.
The Council also pointed out that the non-cooperative jurisdictions are strongly encouraged to make the changes requested of them, as EU and the member states could apply defensive measures to counteract their tax legislation, policies and administrative practices that may result in a loss of revenues for EU member states.