Bermuda has signed new tax information exchange agreements, with 7 Nordic economies – Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Norway and the Faroe Islands – and with New Zealand.
Bermuda was one of the first jurisdictions to commit to the international standards of transparency and exchange of information in May 2000, and one of 11 jurisdictions that contributed to the development of the Model Agreement on Exchange of Information in Tax Matters in 2002, on which the bilateral agreements with the Nordic economies are based.
*”This agreement provides clear proof that Bermuda is determined to live up to OECD standards for transparency and information exchange on tax matters,”* the Bermudan Minister of Finance, Paula A. Cox, commented during the signing ceremony in the House of Sweden, Washington DC, on Thursday. She also stressed that the agreement is the result of devoted and tireless work by all the parties involved. The agreement was signed by the Danish, Icelandic, Norwegian and Swedish ambassadors in the USA, as well as representatives of the governments of Finland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland.
Jeffrey Owens, Director of the OECD’s Centre for Tax Policy and Administration, said: *“Bermuda is an important financial centre that played a constructive role in developing the standards now endorsed by all major financial centres. I am very pleased that it has taken another significant step in implementing the standards. I know that it is determined to implement the standards fully and that other agreements will follow shortly.”*
The Nordic Council of Ministers said this new agreement is a continuation of a major Nordic project, which has seen similar pacts agreed with the Isle of Man, Jersey, Guernsey and the Cayman Islands. Negotiations are at an advanced stage with Aruba, the British Virgin Islands and the Netherlands Antilles. Several bilateral trade agreements were signed as well, to enhance co-operation between Bermuda and the Nordic countries.
Bermuda has agreements with the United States (1988), Australia (2005), and the United Kingdom (2007) so now has a total of 11 such agreements.