OECD launches facility to disclose common reporting standard tax avoidance

The OECD has launched a facility to disclose common reporting standard (CRS) tax avoidance schemes as part of its efforts to ensure the integrity of the standard, adding that an additional 500 bilateral automatic exchange relationships have recently been established between over 60 jurisdictions

There is now a disclosure facility on the automatic exchange portal which allows interested parties to report potential schemes to circumvent the CRS.

The OECD says this facility is part of a wider three step process to deal with schemes that purport to avoid reporting under the CRS. As part of this process all actual or perceived loopholes that are identified are systematically analysed in order to decide on appropriate courses of action.

The CRS already requires that jurisdictions, as part of their effective implementation of the standard, put in place anti-abuse rules to prevent any practices intended to circumvent the reporting and due diligence procedures.

The OECD reports there are now over 1800 bilateral relationships in total in place across the globe for the automatic exchange of CRS information, most of them based on the multilateral competent authority agreement on automatic exchange of financial account information (CRS MCAA).

With respect to the jurisdictions exchanging as of 2017, virtually all have now activated their relationships under the CRS MCAA, while a significant number of new exchange relationships have now been put in place with respect to 2018 jurisdictions. The remaining exchange relationships are expected to be activated in the course of this year.

A further activation round is scheduled to take place in July 2017 which will allow the remaining jurisdictions to nominate the partners with which they will undertake automatic exchanges. The next update on the latest bilateral exchange relationships will be published before the summer break, with updates to follow on a periodic basis.

In total, 100 jurisdictions have agreed to start automatically exchanging financial account information in September 2017 and 2018, under the CRS.

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