George Town, Grand Cayman – In addition to receiving a high ranking for its legislative and regulatory framework, the Cayman Islands has been confirmed as one of the vice chairs of the Peer Review Group, and retained its position on the Steering Group, of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes.
'This confirmation recognises the dedication and value that Cayman has brought to the Global Forum over these past few years', said Minister for Financial Services Wayne Panton. 'While this will mean more responsibility, it demonstrates that our engagement, commitment and hard work are acknowledged'.
The positions were confirmed as part of the periodic rotation of membership in the forum's Steering Group and Peer Review Group. The rotation will become effective on 1 January 2014.
Cayman also has been rated 'largely compliant' following the Global Forum's peer review and rating process. The ratings were based on the forum's Phase 1 assessments of member countries' legal and regulatory frameworks, and Phase 2 assessments of their practical implementation of the global standard for tax information exchange.
Other countries in the largely compliant category include the Bahamas, Bermuda, Germany, Italy, Jersey, Singapore, the UK and the US.
For the ratings process, the Global Forum assigned compliant, largely compliant, partially compliant, or non-compliant ratings to 10 individual elements. In addition, an overall rating was given. Cayman's received eight compliant ratings, and two largely compliant ratings, on the individual elements.
In all, the Global Forum published the ratings of 50 jurisdictions at its 6th Plenary Meeting in Jakarta on 22 November 2013. The overall rating for 18 jurisdictions was compliant; 26, largely compliant; two, partially compliant; and four, non-compliant.
'I am very pleased with Cayman's rating, and with our participation in the Global Forum', Minister Panton said. 'The overall results of the Peer Review ratings demonstrate that the forum is ensuring proper adherence to the international standard on exchange of information for tax purposes, based an objective and robust peer review mechanism'.
The Global Forum's membership comprises 121 countries. According to its release, work began on rating the members' exchange of information framework once a representative sample of peer review reports had completed.
Also at the Jakarta meeting, the Global Forum established an Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) Group, open to all interested members, to prepare the move towards AEOI implementation. Italy was elected chair of this group, and Cayman is a member.
Furthermore, members examined the Global Forum's terms of reference, in order to take account of recent developments in transparency, including in relation to beneficial ownership.
For more information on the ratings, visit http://ow.ly/raMCy.
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