2018 European Black List: what is it? A new European list of countries with the highest avoidance risk

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2018 European Black List: what is it? A new European list of countries with the highest avoidance risk

The European Union is about to issue a new 2018 black list concerning countries with a preferential taxation system.

The European Commission has indeed already started the procedure to define a list of non-cooperative countries, in order to help European Countries in the struggle against tax avoidance and the abuse of fiscal evasion.

During the following months, some of the countries included on the new black list will be subject, on the basis of indications provided by the European countries, to careful and in-depth evaluation, in order to focus on those which are not compliant with European fiscal and tax provisions.

The goal is to fill a 2018 European black list and go over the several national black lists, such as, for example, the one in force in Italy, and substitute them with a shared list among all the member countries of the European Union.

The list will be a very useful tool for all member countries to debate and negotiate with countries which refuse to collaborate with the European Union and whose tax systems are privileged.

Until now, several countries have been analysed, from Bahrain to Jamaica, Hong Kong to the Isle of Man, Jersey to Costa Rica, in order to verify and state the fiscal avoidance risk on the base of specific criteria and objective indicators, among which economics data, legal institutions, economics agreements with the European Union, financial activities and others.

Some of the countries with a higher risk have been selected and other criteria will be applied for them in order to evaluate their transparency.

In the preliminary European black list, the countries Andorra, Liechtenstein, the Principality of Monaco, San Marino and Switzerland, have a reserved space thanks to recent agreements signed with the European Union in order to guarantee so-called Tax Transparency.

Countries included on the black list:

  • Luxemburg
  • San Marino
  • Switzerland, as from 2017, is no longer included on the black list: Italy has signed an agreement with Switzerland which foresees the end of bank secrecy, modifying the current Convention against double taxation and adapting it to the OCSE standard. Since 2017, the Italian Tax Authority can require from banks information referring to Italian citizens who have had connections with Swiss banks. The information, however,  will not concern the period between 2005-2009.
  • Principality of Monaco: the agreement signed by Italy and the Principality of Monaco, on the basis of the “Tax Information Exchange Agreement” (TIEA) drafted by the OCSE in order to facilitate the automatic exchange of information, has no provisions on double taxation avoidance.
  • Liechtenstein
  • Cayman Islands:
  • Hong Kong:
  • Andorra:
  • Barbados