Category: Russia

Swedbank hires EY to conduct forensics into money laundering

Swedbank, one of the largest banks in Sweden, has hired professionals services firm EY to investigate the bank’s possible involvement in large scale money laundering. According to media reports in Sweden, over the period of nearly ten years the bank facilitated approximately $5.8 billion worth of suspicious transactions. The transactions… – Continue reading

Defying US, India inks $5 bn deal with Russia

NEW DELHI: India and Russia are exploring the option of trading in their local currencies and looking at signing agreements on investment protection and avoidance of double taxation, Russia’s minister for economic development Maxim Oreshkin said on Friday. The commerce ministry is considering the feasibility of a renminbi-rupee trade with… – Continue reading

UK court refuses to extradite former Trust Bank owner to Russia

Magistrates’ Court ruled that Ilya Yurov persecution was politically motivated because of his connections with Khodorkovsky. Westminster Magistrates’ Court refused to extradite Ilya Yurov, the former part owner of Trust Bank, who is on the international wanted list, RBC reported. The court believes that the extradition would violate human rights…. – Continue reading

NBI probe in Turku targets real estate firm, nabs third suspect

A large-scale police operation into money laundering appears to have targeted the Airiston Helmi real estate firm, led by a Russian man with Maltese citizenship. An exceptionally large police operation took place in southwest Finland this weekend, in what the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) said was an extensive search… – Continue reading

McDonald’s Luxembourg tax deal not illegal

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – McDonald’s tax deal with Luxembourg did not breach EU state aid rules, EU antitrust regulators ruled on Wednesday, saying the reason the US fast food chain did not pay some taxes was due to the mismatch between US and Luxembourg laws. The decision by the European Commission… – Continue reading

Minister of Economic Development names factors that will make companies move to Russian offshores

The first companies to enter Russian offshores are those that face pressure on the part of foreign authorities, the Head of the Ministry of Economic Development believes. Also, the first residents of the Special Administrative Region (SAR) will be those that will not entail significant costs. The first residents of… – Continue reading

Russian Finance Ministry Considering Abolishing VAT on Gold

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Russian Finance Ministry is considering complete abolition of value added tax (VAT) on gold, believing that this measure will help to return the capital worth tens of billions of rubles to the country, Deputy Finance Minister Alexey Moiseev told Sputnik on Thursday. “We receive appeals, including from… – Continue reading

Crypto Islands as Double Offshore

There is a small island in the Caribbean … You immediately imagine relaxation, a beach, palm trees. However today in these small areas a really big crypto history is being created. The crypto business is increasingly mastering the jurisdiction of “dwarf” states, such as Cyprus, Malta, Gibraltar, The Republic of… – Continue reading

Federation Council Approves ‘Russian Tax Havens Laws’ to Thwart Sanctions

The Russian parliament’s upper chamber approved a package of laws enabling Russia-controlled foreign offshore companies to be re-registered in offshore financial centers (OFCs) established in Russia’s Kaliningrad Region and Primorsky Territory in order to minimize the possible consequences of sanctions and political risks from foreign countries. The legislation establishes the… – Continue reading

Which Countries is The Cryptocurrency Taxed In?

The cryptocurrency industry is still at a very early stage of its development, so there are no single international rules yet. The governments of individual countries independently try to regulate digital assets. The tax on the cryptocurrency varies in different countries. Within the framework of this article, we will try… – Continue reading

Keith Schembri Once Again Contradicts His Own Statements Regarding His Offshore Company Network

His story has changed somewhere along the line Keith Schembri’s latest explanation today of his network of offshore companies flies in the face of his original statement when the Panama scandal first broke out two years ago. Reacting to stories published today by German paper Süddeutsche Zeitung and the Times… – Continue reading

OECD Releases More Transfer Pricing Country Guides

The OECD has published new transfer pricing country profiles for Australia, China, Estonia, France, Georgia, Hungary, India, Israel, Liechtenstein, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Sweden, and Uruguay, bringing the number of such overviews published by the OECD to 44. The profiles explain the current transfer pricing legislation and practices of each country…. – Continue reading

Russia Considers Creation of 2 Tax Havens Over US Sanctions – Reports

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The Russian authorities are discussing the creation of two offshore financial centers (OFCs) with special legal systems in the Kaliningrad Region and the Primorsky Territory to support business circles targeted by US sanctions, the Vedomosti newspaper reported on Tuesday. According to the Vedomosti newspaper, the tax havens… – Continue reading

Offshore Tax Haven Marshall Islands to Issue National Cryptocurrency

A small island nation with less than 60,000 inhabitants best known internationally as a former test site for nuclear weapons is joining the hottest new trend – issuing a national cryptocurrency. The planned Marshall Islands’ Govcoin is expected to be issued later this year. Marshall Islands Govcoin ICO The Republic… – Continue reading

Vladimir Putin Acknowledges Need for Blockchain Tech Adoption

Russian president stresses the need for Russia to increase its involvement in blockchain tech, in order to avoid being “late in the race”. Russian president Vladimir Putin has fully endorsed blockchain technology, acknowledging its significance and emphasizing the importance of early adoption in order to avoid being left behind. As… – Continue reading

Russia Drafts Bill to Create Offshore Companies to Trade Cryptocurrencies

The Russian Ministry of Finance is drafting a bill to allow the creation of offshore companies to trade cryptocurrencies. This follows the bill which the ministry recently published on the legal framework for cryptocurrencies. Crypto Trading Offshore “The Ministry of Finance proposed to create offshore companies in Russia for trading… – Continue reading

Malta makes 518 mln euros from its citizenship by investment scheme

VALLETTA, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) — Malta has generated 518 million euros since it started its citizenship by investment scheme, according to Prime Minister Joseph Muscat. Replying to a parliamentary question on Wednesday, Muscat said that of the total revenue generated, 363 million euros had entered in the country’s National Development… – Continue reading

Swiss Come Clean Amid Data Swaps

Switzerland’s abandonment of banking secrecy for international tax dodgers is having an unexpected side effect at home: more domestic tax cheats with accounts around Europe are coming forward. If 2017 was the glide path for Switzerland’s international data-swapping agreements, this year means business: Swiss banks must automatically share client data… – Continue reading

Paradise Papers: ICIJ releases another database revealing offshore companies

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has released a database of around 13.4 million documents revealing over 25,000 companies owned by the world’s rich and influential individuals. The ICIJ coordinated the Panama Papers investigation into offshore companies. The latest files have disclosed the financial details of politicians, corporations, and… – Continue reading

Russian Federation: BVI Ready To Disclose Beneficiaries

Goltsblat BLP advises that the Federal Tax Service (FTS) has approved BVI’s removal from the list of countries (jurisdictions) not exchanging information with the Russian Federation for tax purposes from 1 January 2018 (the relevant order is pending registration with the Ministry of Justice). A country’s removal from the FTS… – Continue reading

Aircraft Leasing in Russia – Key developments in Russian tax and insurance laws

Summary: With effect from 1 January 2017, a number of amendments to Russian law have come into force which will affect aircraft leasing arrangements for lessors and financiers that have aircraft leased or financed with Russian operators. These amendments have started to affect negotiations and re-negotiations of leases with Russian… – Continue reading

Danish bank accused of Russia money laundering

Denmark’s top lender, Danske Bank, played an “organised” role in a Russian money-laundering scam, French prosecutors have said. The Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris said the bank’s branch in Estonia helped to move €15 million of “money from organised fraud and tax evasion” in Russia into France and other… – Continue reading

Russia and Japan sign Double Taxation Avoidance Convention

The Russian President and the Japanese Prime Minister signed the Convention for the Elimination of Double Taxation with respect to Taxes on Income and the Prevention of Tax Evasion and Avoidance (the “Convention”) on 7 September 2017. The Convention will replace the existing treaty signed in 1986 by the Soviet… – Continue reading

Russian Tax Service approves British Virgin Islands’ removal from offshore list

The Federal Tax Service (FTS) removes the British Virgin Islands (BVI) from the black list of ‘tax havens’. This change will affect the interests of Russian owners of the local companies. Leaving BVI for another offshore may help them keep their secrets, but not forever. Removal of the BVI from… – Continue reading

Japan, Russia Agree New Double Tax Pact

The governments of Japan and Russia signed a new convention on the elimination of double taxation on September 7. The convention replaces the 1986 agreement between Japan and the former Soviet Union. It lowers withholding tax rates on cross-border income from trade and investment – in most cases to zero… – Continue reading

Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Taxes purchases Thomson Reuters tax solutions

Among the products purchased by the Ministry are: Onesource Benchmark and Onesource TP Loan Module. Thomson Reuters and Ministry of Taxes of the Republic of Azerbaijan have signed an agreement under which the Ministry will use Thomson Reuters tax solutions aimed at implementing tax control in the sphere of transfer… – Continue reading

Declare Offshore Wealth? Russia Tycoons Would Rather Ship Themselves Off Shore

MOSCOW — Some of Russia’s super-rich have given up residency to escape a 2014 law requiring them to disclose offshore assets, wealthy businessmen told Reuters, a practice that could keep billions of dollars hidden from Moscow’s tax authorities. Interviews with more than a dozen people familiar with the practice —… – Continue reading

Russia To Sign OECD’s BEPS Convention

Russia will sign the OECD’s Multilateral Convention to implement tax treaty-related measures to prevent base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS), the Government announced on May 20. The Convention, developed by the OECD under Action 15 of the BEPS project, will transpose BEPS recommendations into over 2,000 tax treaties worldwide. According… – Continue reading

UK: The UK Company: A New Alternative For International Investors?

This article is the first of a series of articles that looks at tax aspects of the UK company which make it an attractive international business company, or “IBC”. This generic label, and its acronym, are normally associated with the BVI company, and its international competitors. An essential feature of… – Continue reading

Russia introduces draft law on country-by-country reporting requirements: implications for multinationals

A newly published federal draft law introduces Russia to a three-tiered approach to transfer pricing documentation and brings Russian regulations in this area in line with the OECD minimum standards under Action 13 of the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) Action Plan. The draft law, published by the Ministry… – Continue reading

Russian Federation: Confirmation Of Direct Investment In Capital To Apply A Reduced Tax Rate On Payment Of Dividends

On 30 December 2016 the Commercial Court of Voronezh Oblast delivered a judgement in case No. А14-10190/2014 (the “Decision”) under the claim of Ilyushin Finance Co. Open Joint Stock Company (the “Company”). The case is an example of a broad interpretation of the list of documents confirming entitlement to a… – Continue reading

RF Supreme Court consolidates court practice on the application of transfer pricing and thin capitalization rules

On February 16, 2017, the Presidium of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation approved the Review of Court Practice in the Consideration of Cases Involving the Application of Certain Provisions of Section V.1 and Article 269 of the Tax Code of the Russian Federation (the “Review”). There is no… – Continue reading

Deutsche Bank to pay $425 million fine over Russian money-laundering scheme: New York regulator

Deutsche Bank will pay a $425 million fine in relation to a money-laundering scheme that regulators say moved $10 billion out of Russia, the New York State Department of Financial Services said Monday. The department said Deutsche was moving money out of Russia by using a stock “mirror trading” strategy,… – Continue reading

Andorra to renounce banking secrecy as it sheds tax haven status

Pyrenees principality approves automatic sharing of information on accounts held by non-residents from EU countries Andorran lawmakers have agreed to end banking secrecy in the Pyrenees mountains principality, approving automatic sharing of information on accounts held by non-residents. The General Council, Andorra’s unicameral parliament, approved a measure that will come… – Continue reading

Panama needs new anti-corruption laws to combat tax dodgers: panel

Panama can remain a competitive financial center while cracking down on tax evaders and other criminals who have used the country to launder money, according to the panel formed by the government after the “Panama Papers” scandal broke in April. The five-member “Committee of Independent Experts”, including a former boss… – Continue reading

OECD sets timeline for country profiles for cross-border tax disputes

The OECD has set the minimum standards it requires from countries submitting Mutual Agreement Procedure (MAP) profiles, with only 41 countries currently having a completed profile, which will be used as a tool for resolving cross-border tax disputes The MAP falls under Action 14 on the Base Erosion and Profit… – Continue reading

Hong Kong, Russia DTA Enters Into Force

The comprehensive double taxation agreement (CDTA) between Hong Kong and Russia, which was signed in January this year, entered into force on July 29, 2016, and will be in effect in Hong Kong for any year of assessment beginning on or after April 1, 2017. The CDTA is said to… – Continue reading

Oxfam in call for crackdown to combat money launderers using Scottish shell firms

OXFAM has called for action to close a legal loophole that has seen a booming number of Scottish shell firms used for tax dodging and money laundering. The global charity warned that the country was becoming one of the world’s “secret tax havens where the privileged minority hide billions from… – Continue reading

Armenia and Germany sign intergovernmental agreement to avoid double taxation

On June 29, Edward Nalbandian, Foreign Minister of Armenia, met in Yerevan with Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Federal Foreign Minister of Germany and the OSCE Chairperson-in-office. The meeting started in a tete-a-tete format, and proceeded in the extended format with the participation of delegations. The two ministers signed an Agreement between the… – Continue reading