News / OECD takes aim at CRS avoidance schemes

On 5 May 2017, the OECD’s Centre for Tax Policy in an effort to sustain the Common Reporting Standard’s (CRS) integrity, released “a disclosure facility on the Automatic Exchange Portal which allows interested parties to report potential schemes to circumvent the CRS.” According to the press release, this mechanism fits is part of a three step process the OECD has created to deal with schemes that support to avoid reporting under the CRS. Under this assistance it is recognized that “all actual or perceived loopholes that are identified” will be studied to define what needed to be done to curtail their use.

This facility goes hand in hand with the OECD’s push to impose reporting by countries required to “put in place anti-abuse rules to prevent any practices intended to circumvent the reporting and due diligence procedures.”
As of last week, approximately 1,800 bilateral agreements on the automatic exchange of information have been signed between jurisdictions that are enrolled in the OECD’s CRS programme.

Most of the agreements are signed as Multilateral Competent Authority agreements on Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information (MCAA), and many of those agreements have come into force in 2017 and many scheduled to enter into force in 2018.  

OECD statistics show that 100 jurisdictions have agreed to start automatically exchanging financial account information in September 2017 and 2018, in accordance to CRS rules.

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