Friday, March 16, 2012

Netherlands to share more tax info with the US

From TJN:

U.S. hunts for black money in Europe Financial Times Netherlands 
A few days ago, the Netherlands announced that it joins the FATCA implementation agreement between the US and Germany, France, the UK, Italy and Spain. Under this agreement, foreign banks and other financial institutions do not need to report information directly to the IRS, but they will be obliged by national legislation to report it to the government of their home country, which then exchanges it on reciprocal terms with the US. This reduces the reporting burden for the banks and other institutions and for that reason, the agreement is supported - somewhat grudgingly - by the Dutch Banking Association. See the government press release Netherlands prepared to join U.S. and G5 on FATCA. 
The links take you to articles in Dutch.  Google tries hard to translate but I think we'll have to take the TJN's word for it.  This implies that automatic information exchange is in the works between the U.S. and a country it called a tax haven (but quickly took back); here is the implementation agreement.  Of course all we're doing right now is agreeing to agree:
"the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom have agreed to explore a common approach to FATCA implementation through domestic reporting and reciprocal automatic exchange and based on existing bilateral tax treaties."


  1. First thing I would like welcome your impending arrival to Canada.

    Second I find the absence of Canada, Australia, and Japan very notable from this agreement given the fact none of these countries are "tax havens" in any sense and historically they are close allies with the US. Clearly something is up. At least from afar it appears Canada, et all have real concerns with what the US is trying to do with FATCA.

    On the otherhand I have heard that Ireland, Luxembourg, and the Isle of Man are all eager to enter to FATCA "partner" agreements despite the fact that all three are commonly thought of as tax havens.

  2. I also wanted to link to an article by Prof. Arthur Cockfield of Queen's University who as I understand is perhaps one of foremost Canadian experts on international tax policy. Cockfield is the editor of Globalization and Its Tax Discontents: Tax Policy and International Investments. The article I linked too is titled The Coming US Canada Tax War discussing the recent US FATCA legislation and attempts by the US to improve to tax compliance among US Persons residing in Canada. Cockfield calls on the Parliament of Canada to enact legislation to declare the US FATCA "null and void" within Canadian territory and that Canada consider enacting retaliatory withholding taxes against US resident owners of Canadian securities.