George Town, Grand Cayman – The Cayman
Islands and the UK today signed a 'FATCA'-type
intergovernmental agreement (IGA), preparing the way for Cayman to
automatically share financial information with the UK on UK
taxpayers who hold Cayman Islands accounts.
Steps to establish the legislative and operational framework to
implement the agreement are underway, and Government also intends
to issue guidance to assist with the implementation, said
Cayman's Premier, the Hon. Alden McLaughlin.
'Entering into this agreement with the UK builds on our
shared history of cooperation in tax and transparency matters;
furthermore, it strongly indicates our mutual support for a single,
global standard for the automatic exchange of information', he
The Premier pointed out that in September the G20 supported the
OECD in presenting a single global standard for automatic
information exchange by February 2014, and in finalising the
technical implementation aspects by mid-2014.
'While the pace of dialogue has quickened considerably in
recent months, the acceptance of automatic exchange as the most
effective way to combat tax evasion is the result of decades of
global discussion regarding tax transparency', he explained.
'This approach also will minimise operational costs for
governments and business'.
Cayman's Minister of Financial Services, Wayne Panton, added
that Cayman and the UK have agreed to monitor the outcomes of the
IGA, in order to ensure that it remains effective against tax
evasion, and that it also does not add undue compliance costs for
Under the IGA, financial institutions in Cayman will report
information on financial accounts that are substantially owned by
persons with UK tax-reporting obligations, to the Cayman
Government. Cayman's Government will then forward the
information to the UK. Minister Panton also noted that the IGA
contains details of the alternative reporting regime for UK
resident non-domiciled individuals.
'This is a momentous step forward in tax transparency, and a
tribute to a close working relationship between the UK and the
Cayman Islands', Minister Simmonds said. 'When we work
together we can push the international agenda forward. I want to
express my thanks for all the hard work put in by all
UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, also welcomed
'The UK has led the way in creating a new global standard
for tax transparency and automatic tax information sharing. This
was at the heart of our G8 agenda this year, and today's
agreement builds on the progress we have already made.
'We welcome this signing with the Cayman Islands, the first
Overseas Territory to sign this type of agreement with the UK',
Mr Osbourne said. 'This demonstrates our shared commitment to
tackling tax evasion.
'Alongside the significant investment that this Government
has made in HMRC's anti-avoidance and evasion work, these
agreements will help them to clamp down further on those
individuals who seek to hide their assets offshore. Our message is
very clear: it is only fair that people pay the tax they owe. If
you are trying to evade tax, we are coming after you'.
Cayman Finance also is pleased that the Government has reached
this decision with the UK.
'It reinforces our reputation as a well-regulated and
transparent IFC', said Cayman Finance CEO, Gonzalo Jalles.
'We look forward to learning more about the details of this
agreement, its implementation, and its reporting implications',
FATCA, or the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, began as a US
tax-reporting initiative for US residents living overseas. The
Cayman Islands Government expects to sign a Model 1 IGA with the
US, to which the UK agreement is similar, in the very near
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