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Following commitments made at a high political level to remedy EU concerns, the Council of the European Union, on January 23, 2018, removed eight tax jurisdictions, including Panama, from the EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes.
These eight jurisdictions are: Barbados, Grenada, the Republic of Korea, Macao SAR, Mongolia, Panama, Tunisia, and the UAE. The Council agreed that a “delisting” was justified in the light of an expert assessment of the commitments made by these jurisdictions to address deficiencies identified by the EU.
The eight jurisdictions have been moved from annex I of the conclusions (non-cooperative jurisdictions) to annex II (cooperation with respect to commitments taken).
Prepared in 2017, the EU’s list is intended to promote good governance in taxation worldwide, maximizing efforts to prevent tax avoidance. Jurisdictions that remain on the list are strongly encouraged to make the changes requested of them. Their tax legislation, policies, and administrative practices result or may result in a loss of revenues for the EU’s member states. Pending such changes, the EU and the member states could apply defensive measures.
Vladislav Goranov, Finance Minister of Bulgaria, which currently holds the Council presidency, said: “Our listing process is already proving its worth. Jurisdictions around the world have worked hard to make commitments to reform their tax policies. Our aim is to promote good tax governance globally.”