PRIME MINISTER HARRIS TO ATTEND GLOBAL TAX CONFERENCE IN EUROPE

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Mrs. Sylvia Gumbs, Deputy Financial Secretary of St. Kitts and Nevis
Mrs. Sylvia Gumbs, Deputy Financial Secretary of St. Kitts and Nevis

BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, NOVEMBER 1ST, 2016 (PRESS SEC):
Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris and Mrs. Sylvia Gumbs, Deputy Financial Secretary in the Governmen t of St. Kitts and Nevis, will attend the 9th Meeting of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes from tomorrow, Wednesday, November 2nd to Friday, November 4th, 2016. The conference is scheduled to take place in Tbilisi, the capital city of the country of Georgia, which is located at the intersection where Europe meets Asia also known as Eurasia.

The Global Forum, which comprises 137 member countries, is the premier international body that works to ensure the implementation of the international standards on tax transparency.

Member jurisdictions’ compliance is monitored via an in-depth peer review process. Phase 1 of the review process evaluates the quality of a jurisdiction’s legal and regulatory framework for the exchange of information, and Phase 2 assesses the practical implementation of that framework. Upon completion of both Phases, each jurisdiction is designated an overall rating.

As of July 26th, 2016, the Global Forum concluded 235 peer reviews and assigned compliance ratings to 101 member countries that have undergone Phase 2 reviews.

St. Kitts and Nevis is one of 67 jurisdictions rated “Largely Compliant.” Among the Largely Compliant countries are Aruba, the Bahamas, Belize, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Georgia, Grenada, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, the Turks and Caicos Islands, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Twenty-two jurisdictions have been rated “Compliant.” The Compliant list includes Canada, Colombia, France, India, Japan, Korea, Mexico, South Africa, Spain, and Sweden. Twelve have been rated “Partially Compliant,” and they include Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Curaçao, and Sint Maarten.

The Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis signed the OECD’s Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters on Thursday, August 25th, 2016, further demonstrating to the international community its commitment to implementing the international standards on transparency and exchange of information for tax purposes.

At the invitation of the instigating body, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) – and following months of bilateral negotiations between the OECD and the Federation’s Finance Ministry – Dr. Harris, who is the Minister of Finance, signed up to the Convention on August 25th during a ceremony held at the OECD headquarters in Paris, France. Mrs. Gumbs and Dr. David Doyle, the Federation’s Ambassador to UNESCO who is based in Paris, accompanied Prime Minister Harris. The Convention will enter into force in St. Kitts and Nevis on Thursday, December 1st, 2016.

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