PRESS RELEASE – Fourteen Caribbean nations were cited by the European Union as international tax havens in a recent report, the “Action Plan for Fair and Efficient Corporate Taxation in the EU.”
The so-called “blacklist” of the top 30 least cooperative jurisdictions included seven member territories of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).
Saint Lucia was not amongst that number, but Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Economic Affairs, Planning and Social Security, Hon. Dr. Kenny D. Anthony has joined OECS leaders in rejecting the validity of the list. Said Dr. Anthony:
“Whereas Saint Lucia was not on the list of jurisdictions that are supposedly non-compliant, we share the concerns of the rest of the OECS. It is of vital importance at his time that we work closely with our allies in the Caribbean Community and the European Union to ensure that this matter is resolved as speedily as possible. CARICOM must stand together to ensure that the good names of its member territories are restored.”
The OECS Heads of Government, former Caribbean diplomat Sir Ronald Sanders and the Caribbean Association of Banks have all criticised the EU list, which includes Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Grenada, St Kitts-Nevis and St Vincent and the Grenadines. The list cites lapses in terms of transparency, exchange of information, and fair tax competition.