EX TAX CHIEF BACKS OPPOSITION LEADER’S TIEA COMMENT
Tax expert and member of the GSD executive Chris White has said that Daniel Feetham, the Leader of the Opposition, “was absolutely right in the statements he made. The Government of Gibraltar has signed 27 Tax Information Exchange Agreements.”
In a recent statement the Gibraltar Government said that Mr Feetham was not well briefed because in his GBC interview he said that “Gibraltar has signed 27 Agreements for exchange of tax information” when, in fact, there are over 100 tax information exchange arrangements in force.
Mr White said this was not the case and the figure of 27 can be confirmed by viewing the O.E.C.D website. He said: “The process begun under the previous administration and has continued under this administration.”
The statement from the Government has prompted the GSD Opposition to say: “it is really sad and petty in equal measure that the Gibraltar Government persists in distorting statements made,” by Mr Feetham.
The GSD said in a statement that the accuracy of the Government’s statement is not diminished by the fact that Gibraltar has also transposed Directive 2011/16/EU on administrative cooperation in the field of taxation.
This establishes mechanisms for exchange of information with EU countries and that Gibraltar is also bound by the Convention on mutual administrative assistance in tax matters which has established an exchange of information relationship with additional jurisdictions.
In combination with bilateral agreements Gibraltar has arrangements in place with over 100 jurisdictions.
“The Leader of the Opposition was therefore entirely correct in his statement and it is typical of the distortion and spin that characterizes the Government’s every statement to suggest otherwise,” said the GSD.
“It is also very sad that the Government should make such a petty point in a communiqué designed to show how prepared they are to work with the Opposition on matters of national interest, more so when we consider that the Leader of the Opposition made his statement to illustrate the fact that Gibraltar had bilateral agreements with some of the leading jurisdictions and that Spain had refused to sign an agreement with Gibraltar prior to the directive coming into force.”
“In other words the statement was made in the context of defending Gibraltar. So much for bipartisanship,” the party added.