Tax Haven



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the Panama Papers
- ICIJ: LINK ¤ I C I J

_________________________________________

 

  • "the Panama Papers are a global investigation into the sprawling, secretive industry of offshore"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that the world’s rich and powerful use to hide assets and skirt rules by setting up front companies in far-flung jurisdictions"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "based on a trove of more than 11 million leaked files"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the investigation exposes a cast of characters who use offshore companies to facilitate bribery, arms deals, tax evasion and financial fraud"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "millions of documents show heads of state, criminals and celebrities using secret hideaways in tax havens"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the files reveal the offshore holdings of 140 politicians and public officials from around the world"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "more than 214,000 offshore entities appear in the leak, connected to people in more than 200 countries and territories"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the leaked data covers nearly 40 years, from 1977 through the end of 2015"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "it allows a never-before-seen view inside the offshore world - providing a day-to-day, decade-by-decade look at how dark money flows through the global financial system"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "major banks have driven the creation of hard-to-trace companies in offshore havens"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the documents show that banks, law firms and other offshore players have often failed to follow legal requirements"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the release of the leaked documents should prompt governments"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "to seek "concrete sanctions" against jurisdictions and institutions that peddle offshore secrecy"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Tax Deals for Disney and Koch Brothers
- ICIJ: LINK ¤ I C I J

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  • ""Lux Leaks" files obtained by ICIJ (international consortium of investigative journalists) disclose secret tax structures"

 

 

 

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  • "sought by "Big 4" accounting giants for brand name international companies"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "exposing tax-saving maneuvers by American entertainment icon "the Walt Disney Co""

 

 

 

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  • "and politically controversial "Koch Industries Inc""

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "other companies appearing in the leaked files include Hong Kong-based conglomerate "Hutchison Whampoa""

 

 

 

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  • "private equity firm "Warburg Pincus", and Internet phone giant "Skype""

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the aggressive tax structures are being brokered not only by PwC (pricewaterhousecoopers)"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "but also by the other "Big 4" accounting firms:"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "Ernst & Young, Deloitte and KPMG"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the Disney and Koch files show that both companies, advised by Ernst & Young, engineered complex restructurings"

 

 

 

 

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  • "that reorder the ownership of many subsidiaries and centralize them under Luxembourg companies to a company’s own bank"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "these internal lenders received interest from affiliated companies channeling hundreds of millions of dollars in profits through Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and paid little tax"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the two parent companies’ Luxembourg subsidiaries enjoyed tax rates of less than 1 percent"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the Disney tax scheme is laid out in a 34-step advance tax agreement in 2009 by Ernst & Young"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "showing the corporate parent of Mickey Mouse moving money in circles across the globe"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "while transforming it from cash to debt to equity and back"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "Disney’s Rube Goldberg-like series of equity transfers gathered ownership of at least 24 of its subsidiaries"

 

 

 

 

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  • "in France, Italy, Germany, the UK, Australia, the Cayman Islands and the Netherlands under the umbrellas of two newly created companies in Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "at the center of the new structure is a third company, a finance arm called Wedco Participations SCA"

 

 

 

 

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  • "the internal bank made loans to many of the subsidiaries at high interest rates"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "draining profits from those companies that were often in high-tax countries back to Luxembourg in the form of interest payments"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the Luxembourg internal lender paid € 2.8 million in income tax in Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that works out to a tax rate of just over a quarter of 1 percent"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the Koch documents, also prepared by Ernst & Young, describe "Project Snow," a 26-step restructuring"

 

 

 

 

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  • "showing that in the restructuring, which took place starting in 2008, the subsidiaries of Invista"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "passed hundreds of millions of dollars back and forth, converting shares to debt and occasionally dissolving firms"

 

 

 

 

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  • "until a US-based subsidiary becomes "both the debtor and creditor of the same debt"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and the debt is canceled"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "central to Koch’s restructuring deal is an internal company bank, Arteva Europe Sàrl"

 

 

 

 

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  • "which manages the cash flows of the company’s European operations through Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "Arteva reported no staff costs in its financial reports filed in Luxembourg"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "global accounting and tax advisory firms, like Ernst & Young"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "are the prime architects of the inventive profit-shifting strategies"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that allow multinational companies to cut taxes"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Luxembourg Leaks - ICIJ: LINK ¤ I C I J

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  • "the investigation is based on a confidential cache of secret tax agreements approved by Luxembourg authorities"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that provide tax-relief for more than 340 companies around the world"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Offshore Leaks Database
- ICIJ: LINK ¤ I C I J

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  • "when Apple, Google and other American companies set up structures to channel their profits through Ireland"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "they all used tax havens"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "they bought secrecy, minimal or zero taxes and legal insulation"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that allowed companies to operate in a fiscal and regulatory vacuum"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the Offshore Leaks Database allows to search through more than 100,000 secret companies, trusts and funds"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "created in offshore locales such as the British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Cook Islands and Singapore"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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leaked financial Documents - Washington Post: LINK ¤ WASHINGTON POST

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  • "a long-term analysis of more than 2.5 million leaked e-mails and financial documents"

 

 

 

 

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  • "has shed some rare light on the secretive network of tax havens and offshore accounts"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "where a number of the world’s elite park their fortunes"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "it does hint at how prevalent offshore accounts have become"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "especially among the upper crust"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Offshore's global Impact
- Huffington Post: LINK ¤ HUFFINGTON POST

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  • "the files have cracked open the secrets of more than 120,000 offshore companies and trusts"

 

 

 

 

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  • "exposing hidden dealings of politicians, con men and the mega-rich the world over"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "providing facts and figures - cash transfers, incorporation dates, links between companies and individuals"

 

 

 

 

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  • "that illustrate how offshore financial secrecy has spread aggressively around the globe"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "allowing the wealthy and the well-connected to dodge taxes"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "cross-border flows of global proceeds of financial crimes"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "total between US$ 1 trillion and US$ 1.6 trillion a year"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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secret Files expose Offshore’s global Impact -
International Consortium of Investigative Journalists: LINK ¤ I C I J

 

 

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G7: Action needed against Tax Evasion
- the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "the G7 group of industrialised nations has agreed"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "collective action needs to be taken to target tax avoidance and evasion"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "Chancellor Osborne said it was incredibly important"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that companies and individuals pay the tax that is due"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Merkel urges Cameron to crack down on Tax Havens
- the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "Merkel has had questions about the monitoring of British sovereign territories"

 

 

 

 

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  • "used as tax havens by the rich"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the German public has been alarmed about reports of its citizens using havens to avoid paying taxes at home"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a Downing Street spokesman said the prime minister was keen to stress that the UK and others"

 

 

 

 

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  • "should show global leadership by taking concrete action on tax evasion"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and making clear that everyone must pay their fair share of taxes"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Offshore Hideaways - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "the vast tide of offshore money can disrupt economies"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a study by James Henry, former chief economist at McKinsey:"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "wealthy individuals have US$ 21 - US$ 32tn tucked away in offshore havens"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "roughly equivalent to the size of the US and Japanese economies combined"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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British Virgin Islands
- the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "the UK-controlled BVI has been the most successful among the mushrooming secrecy havens that cater for them"

 

 

 

 

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  • "the Caribbean micro-state has incorporated more than a million such offshore entities"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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BVI 'Nominee Director' System - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "three pieces of paper are vital in setting up ready-made companies"

 

 

 

 

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"1. a promise by a nominee director only to do what the real owner tells them:"



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  • "nominee director declaration"

 

 

 

 

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"2. a general power of attorney:"




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  • "the nominee secretly hands back all control to that real owner"

 

 

 

 

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"3. a signed, but undated, director's resignation letter:"



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  • "this enables a nominee to duck liability in the event of any trouble"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Offshore Scandal: Britain
- the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "Britain's relationship with its overseas territories means it could - if it wanted"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "easily tackle offshore global secrecy"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • the British Virgin Islands: "the islands are a British Overseas Territory"

 

 

 

 

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  • "legally under the jurisdiction of the UK (and with a British governor)"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "other havens with UK imprimatur include the Cayman islands, Gibraltar, and the Turks and Caicos Islands"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Austria Finance Minister - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "Fekter, a member of Austria's governing coalition, said the European Union"

 

 

 

 

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  • "should force the UK to crack down on tax havens in its jurisdiction"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "Fekter also attacked the US for allowing money laundering in some states"

 

 

 

 

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  • "Delaware and Nevada are tax havens and money-laundering havens"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "that have to be laid bare"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Financial Outflows - the Guardian: LINK ¤ the GUARDIAN

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  • "developing countries lost US$ 859bn in 2010"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "to illicit financial outflows"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "more than they received in aid"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and more than the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN estimates"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "would be required to end hunger globally"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the G8 should end financial secrecy by agreeing to publish a registry of who owns companies, foundations and trusts"

 

 

 

 

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  • "automatically share tax information with other countries, and push tax havens to do the same"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "this would help governments north and south to recover billions of dollars"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "which could transform the lives of millions of people living in poverty"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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global private Wealth
- Tax Justice Network - PDF:
LINK ¤ TAX JUSTICE NETWORK

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  • "a significant fraction of global private financial wealth"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "US$ 21 to US$ 32 trillion"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "has been invested virtually tax-free through the world’s still-expanding black holes"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "of more than 80 "offshore" secrecy jurisdictions"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "since the 1970s, with eager (and often aggressive and illegal)"

 

 

 

 

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  • "assistance from the international private banking industry"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "private elites of 139 countries had accumulated"

 

 

 

 

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  • "US$ 7.3 to US$ 9.3 trillion of unrecorded offshore wealth"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the top 50 international private banks"

 

 

 

 

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  • "collectively managed more than US$ 12.1 trillion"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "in cross-border invested assets from private clients"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a disproportionate share of these assets were managed"

 

 

 

 

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  • "by major global banks that are well known for their role in the financial crisis"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "they are key players in many havens around the globe"

 

 

 

 

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  • "and key enablers of the global tax injustice system"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "the overwhelming share of unrecorded offshore private assets"

 

 

 

 

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  • "belong to a tiny elite, the impact on inequality is astonishing"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "less than 100,000 people, 0.001% of the world’s population"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "control over 30 percent of the world’s financial wealth"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Tax Havens and Poverty - Tax Justice Network - PDF: LINK ¤ TAX JUSTICE NETWORK

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  • "over half of all international bank lending"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "and one-third of foreign direct investment"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "is routed via tax havens"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "over 50 percent of global trade"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "is routed on paper via tax havens"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "personal wealth totalling US$ 11.5 trillion has been shifted offshore by the super-rich"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "evading taxes of over US$ 250 billion annually"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "US$ 1.06 trillion is shifted illicitly from the poorer countries"

 

 

 

 

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  • "of the South into the offshore financial markets every year"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "over two million international business corporations have been created in tax havens"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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reform of the financial and fiscal systems:



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  • "comprehensive disclosure of ownership data"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "adoption of country-by-country reporting standards for multinational companies"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "abolition of the use of 'off-balance' sheet accounting vehicles"

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "effective steps to tackle trade mispricing"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "taxation of hedge fund profits as income rather than capital gains"

 

 

 

 

 

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  • "a multilateral tax information exchange treaty based on automatic exchange"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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TAX HAVEN - Wikipedia EN: LINK ¤ TAX HAVEN

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  • "a tax haven is a state, country or territory where certain taxes are levied at a low rate or not at all"

 

 

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  • "Delaware, US - United States Virgin Islands - Bahamas - Panama - British Virgin Islands"

 

 

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  • "Bermuda - Guernsey - Jersey - Isle of Man - Switzerland - Liechtenstein - Monaco"

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