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25 November 2020

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OECD Announces Outcomes of 2020 Reviews of Harmful Tax Practices

The OECD has announced the outcomes of the 2020 reviews of harmful tax practices as per the BEPS Action 5 minimum standard.

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OECD delivers on tackling harmful tax practices, as a further set of preferential tax regimes are dismantled or tightened (BEPS Action 5)

23/11/2020 – Jurisdictions continue making progress in countering harmful tax practices, as contemplated in the BEPS Action 5 Minimum Standard, with the OECD/G20 Inclusive Framework on BEPS now having approved the outcomes of the 2020 reviews by the OECD Forum on Harmful Tax Practices (FHTP).

This year's review by the FHTP has resulted in significant legislative changes to 44 of the 49 reviewed regimes, with 37 having been redesigned or abolished and a further 7 currently in the process of being amended. For the remaining 5 regimes, the FHTP has concluded that they do not currently pose BEPS risks. As a result, regimes in the following 18 jurisdictions are now in line with the BEPS Action 5 Minimum Standard:

  • Aruba
  • Belize
  • Cook Islands
  • Curaçao
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Republic
  • Georgia
  • Hong Kong (China)
  • Jamaica
  • Maldives
  • Mauritius
  • Morocco
  • North Macedonia
  • Qatar
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • San Marino
  • Switzerland
  • Tunisia

Overall, since the start of the BEPS Project, 295 regimes of 80 jurisdictions have been reviewed and the chart below summarises the outcome of these reviews.

The FHTP is also taking forward its work to make sure that entities in no or only nominal tax jurisdictions have sufficient substance. This is an important aspect of the FHTP’s objective to reduce BEPS-risks and combat harmful tax practices.

All 12 no or only nominal tax jurisdictions now have a legal framework for the collection and reporting of the required information on the activities and revenue of entities that is in line with the FHTP Standard. The focus is therefore moving to the effective implementation of the FHTP Standard.

For 2021, this will include the start of spontaneous exchanges of information on the activities and income of entities by the no or only nominal tax jurisdictions with the jurisdictions of the immediate parent, ultimate parent and beneficial owners of such entities. Simultaneously, the FHTP will initiate an annual monitoring process to ensure that the no or only nominal tax jurisdictions have appropriate mechanisms in place to ensure ongoing compliance with the FHTP Standard.

Access the full technical summary of the outcomes of the FHTP reviews (également disponible en français)

No or only nominal tax jurisdictions include Anguilla, the Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Guernsey, Isle of Man, Jersey, Turks and Caicos Islands and United Arab Emirates.

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