Panama latest signatory to OECD convention on tax evasion

The latest Central American state, Panama has signed the OECD’s multilateral convention on mutual administrative assistance in tax matters, making it the 105th jurisdiction to agree to fight cross-border tax evasion, just months after the Panama Papers debacle

The signing shows that Panama is now implementing its commitment to fully cooperate with the international community on transparency.

‘Panama's decision to sign the multilateral convention is a confirmation of its commitment to take the necessary steps to meet international expectations in the fight against tax evasion,’ OECD secretary-general Angel Gurría said during a signing ceremony with Panama's ambassador to France, María del Pilar Arosemena de Alemán.

‘It also sends a clear signal that the international community is united in its efforts to stamp out offshore tax evasion. We will continue our efforts until there is nowhere left to hide.’

I early November the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes is expected to publish a peer review assessment of how Panama’s legal framework and practices over the last three years match up against existing international standards of transparency and exchange of information on request.

The Convention provides for all forms of administrative assistance in tax matters: exchange of information on request, spontaneous exchange, tax examinations abroad, simultaneous tax examinations and assistance in tax collection. It guarantees extensive safeguards for the protection of taxpayers' rights. It also allows automatic exchange of information on option.

It will also facilitate the automatic exchange of tax information which will come into effect from 2017 across the G20 and some OECD countries. It will also be critical for implementation of automatic exchange of country by country reports under the OECD/G20 Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) project.

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