Guernsey Removed from U.S. “Blacklist”

July 15, 2011

The island of Guernsey’s Chief Minister, Lyndon Trott, met with officials in Washington this week as part of a series of discussions that have been conducted for a number of years. The dialogue between U.S. officials and the island’s representative produced a positive result, as Guernsey has been removed from Democratic Senator Carl Levin’s “blacklist.”

The meetings have focused on strengthening ties between the Guernsey and U.S. governments and have “reinforced Guernsey’s reputation as a leader in tax transparency, information exchange and international co-operation,” said the island’s bulletin.

“This has led to a number of positive outcomes, with the latest example being Senator Levin this week unveiling a modified bill that no longer mistakenly lists the Island as an “offshore secrecy jurisdiction,'” it added.

“The Chief Minister has met numerous times with Senator Levin’s Chief Investigator and Counsel Bob Roach to discuss Guernsey’s well-regulated financial sector, its lack of bank secrecy laws and its co-operative stance on tax information sharing and to object to the inclusion of Guernsey as a presumed secrecy jurisdiction.”

Minister Trott indicated that he is “delighted” by the decision to remove Guernsey from the blacklist, describing the original decision to do include it as having been “unfair.”

The bulletin also pointed out that “in late 2010 the Multistate Tax Commission (MTC), an advisory group for the 50 American states, also chose to remove a similar mistaken reference to Guernsey as an uncooperative tax haven in model legislation that it recommends to its state officials. Guernsey officials met with MTC staff several times to bring about this change.

“In meetings with Congressional offices and top Administration officials in the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Guernsey was warmly welcomed and praised for its continuing efforts to remain at the forefront of international standards.”

James Carroll, an official in the IRS Overseas Operations office, reportedly told the Chief Minister that the IRS is “extremely pleased” with Guernsey’s record. He cited Guernsey’s “phenomenal co-operation” and willingness to meet on a regular basis with the Tax Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in London to ensure the two governments continue to work effectively together.”

Source: Guernsey Government

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