47 Countries adopt the Automatic Exchange of Information as of 2017

G20 countries endorsed the new OECD/G20 standard on automatic exchange of tax information at the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes in Berlin.

During a global signing session of a Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement that will activate automatic exchange of information, 51 jurisdictionsput their commitments into action.  The Agreement is based on the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters.

The new Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information in Tax Matters  provides for an automatic exchange of all financial information on an annual basis. Most jurisdictions have committed to implementing this Standard on a reciprocal basis with all interested jurisdictions.

The information exchanged will include:
  • name and address;
  • taxpayer’s identification number;
  • date and place of birth;
  • account number; and
  • balance, as well as interest, dividends or gains derived from the alienation of these financial assets.

The agreement also includes a requirement that beneficial ownership of all legal entities will be made available to tax authorities and exchanged with treaty partners. It contains clauses to protect taxpayer confidentiality and ensure that the information is only used for the purposes for which it was supplied.

OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría announced that of the 123 Global Forum members, nearly 90 have committed to implement the common reporting standard (CRS) for automatic, reciprocal exchange of tax information. A status report on committed and not committed jurisdictions  will be presented at the annual G20 summit in Brisbane, on 15-16 November.

Early adopters (see below) who signed the agreement have pledged to work towards launching their first information exchanges by September 2017. Others are expected to follow in 2018.  This list includes Switzerland, Hong Kong, Singapore, Macao, Monaco, Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, as well as Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

Five jurisdictions have not yet committed to an implementation date: Panama; Bahrain; Cook Islands; Nauru; and Vanuatu.

The USA is an exceptional case in that it does not appear in any of the lists since it is unilaterally imposing automatic information exchange from 2015 under the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act.

Early adopters

                Country                                           Date of first exchange of information

  1.                Albania                                             September 2018
    2.            Anguilla                                            September 2017
    3.            Argentina                                          September 2017
    4.            Aruba                                               September 2018
    5.            Austria                                             September 2018
    6.            Belgium                                            September 2017
    7.            Bermuda                                          September 2017
    8.            British Virgin Islands                          September 2017
    9.            Cayman Islands                                September 2017
    10.          Colombia                                          September 2017
    11.          Croatia                                             September 2017
    12.          Curacao                                            September 2017
    13.          Cyprus                                              September 2017
    14.          Czech Republic                                  September 2017
    15.          Denmark                                          September 2017
    16.          Estonia                                             September 2017
    17.          Faroe Islands                                    September 2017
    18.          Finland                                             September 2017
    19.          France                                              September 2017
    20.          Germany                                          September 2017
    21.          Gibraltar                                           September 2017
    22.          Greece                                             September 2017
    23.          Guernsey                                         September 2017
    24.          Hungary                                           September 2017
    25.          Iceland                                             September 2017
    26.          Ireland                                             September 2017
    27.          Isle of man                                        September 2017
    28.          Italy                                                  September 2017
    29.          Jersey                                               September 2017
    30.          Korea                                                September 2017
    31.          Latvia                                                September 2017
    32.          Liechtenstein                                      September 2017
    33.          Lithuania                                            September 2017
    34.          Luxembourg                                       September 2017
    35.          Malta                                                 September 2017
    36.          Mauritius                                           September 2017
    37.          Mexico                                              September 2017
    38.          Montserrat                                        September 2017
    39.          Netherlands                                       September 2017
    40.          Norway                                            September 2017
    41.          Poland                                              September 2017
    42.          Portugal                                            September 2017
    43.          Romania                                           September 2017
    44.          San Marino                                        September 2017
    45.          Slovak republic                                  September 2017
    46.          Slovenia                                            September 2017
    47.          South Africa                                       September 2017
    48.          Spain                                                 September 2017
    49.          Sweden                                             September 2017
    50.          Turks & Caicos Islands                       September 2017
    51.          United Kingdom                                 September 2017
Second phase : countries that undertake first exchanges by 2018

Albania, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Australia, Austria, The Bahamas, Belize, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Grenada, Hong Kong (China), Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Marshall Islands, Macao (China), Malaysia, Monaco, New Zealand, Qatar, Russia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Sint Maarten, Switzerland, Turkey, United Arab Emirates

Countries that have not indicated a timeline or that have not yet committed

Bahrain, Cook Islands, Nauru, Panama, Vanuatu

Author: Marc Quaghebeur

Marc Quaghebeur is a Belgian tax lawyer with Cabinet DAVID specialising in international tax issues and cross border estate planning. He is a member of the Brussels Bar and the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners. He

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