James Moore: Take a look at tax havens closer to home

August 12th, 2009

The Independent

Outlook: And so Liechtenstein has surrendered. Following on from the tax information exchange deal with the US comes a similar one with the UK. There will be an amnesty for around 5,000 account holders who could have stashed up to £3bn in the tiny principality, together with a tacit assurance that they won’t be prosecuted if they agree to assume the position and pay up. They’d be well advised to do so because it is more than people in other tax havens may be offered.

Such an agreement would have been all but unthinkable a year ago, but times have changed and governments, having spent billions on economic stimulus plans, have put aside sectional interests to work together. Sooner or later, unpopular measures are going to be called for to plug the yawning chasms between the amount the world’s chancelleries have spent and the amount they are bringing in, in tax.

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