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Oxfam wants Gibraltar blacklisted as tax haven, but acknowledges ‘fair and transparent’ regime

Gibraltar should be included in the European Union’s upcoming blacklist of tax havens, Oxfam said yesterday, in a report that nonetheless recognised the Rock’s “fair and transparent” tax regime.

In a 24-page briefing questioning the credibility of the EU list, Oxfam said power politics meant several significant tax havens were missing from the EU list, which is being updated next week.

Oxfam said Gibraltar had not implemented global measures tackling “base erosion and profit shifting”, a reference to tax planning strategies used by large multi-nationals to artificially shift profits to where they are taxed at lower rates, and expenses to where they obtain tax relief at higher rates.

But the Gibraltar Government responded quickly to the report and said it had already implemented EU measures on base erosion and profit shifting, known in technical jargon as anti-BEPS measures.

While Oxfam was concerned about the international anti-BEPS measures as set by the OECD, these are not materially different from the EU requirements that Gibraltar already has in place.

The Chronicle understands that the Gibraltar Government is in any event in the final stages of consultation ahead of Gibraltar’s implementation of OECD measures.

And though the Oxfam report is critical of Gibraltar, the organisation’s recognition that the Rock meets EU standards on tax transparency and fair taxation was welcomed last night.

“The Gibraltar Government is very pleased that Oxfam’s analysis rightly recognises that we are tax transparent and that we operate a fair tax regime,” a spokesman for No.6 Convent Place said.
“Unfortunately they have not yet recognised that we have implemented all the EU anti-BEPS measures.”

“We are seeking a meeting with those responsible at Oxfam in order to seek to update them on our progress in this respect.”


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