The governments of Grenada and St Vincent and the Grenadines have complained about the European Union’s decision to include them on a list of 30 international tax havens, reports the Latin American Herald.
“Grenada’s inclusion implies that Grenada is not doing sufficient to guard against harmful tax practices,” Prime Minister Keith Mitchell told legislators on Tuesday.
He said his administration was “profoundly disappointed by the decision” and he faulted the EU for ignoring the hard work done by Grenada to comply with global standards for transparency.
The Financial Services Authority in St Vincent and the Grenadines said Tuesday in a statement that it intends to object to what it described as blacklisting.
“Of absolute significance is that St Vincent and the Grenadines has already been assessed as NOT being a tax haven by the OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development), the responsible international body for international tax compliance purposes,” the FSA said, calling for a regional response to the EU list.
The EU list, released last Wednesday, names 13 Caribbean countries among 30 nations worldwide that are not doing enough to crack down on tax avoidance.
On Monday, the head of the European Union Delegation to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Mikael Barford, maintained that the decision to release the list of international tax havens should not be regarded as an attempt to blacklist any country.
“The criteria may not be blacklisting, in a traditional sense, as it is very often perceived,” he said.
The list is “not likely” to have any effect on the credit ratings or investments flows of the named Caribbean countries, Barford said.
Besides Grenada and St Vincent, the Caribbean territories as tax havens are: Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, St Kitts and Nevis, Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Montserrat and the Turks and Caicos Islands.