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Two Tax Havens Agree to “Share” Information
August 26th, 2009
Richard Murphy has pointed out that Switzerland has signed its second tax information exchange agreement with... Luxembourg. That's right, Switzerland is now 1/6 of the way to being squeaky-clean because it signed an agreement (and a weak one at that) with another tax haven. As Richard says, this amounts to: "You look one way and I’ll look the other." From Swissinfo:

Switzerland on Tuesday signed a revised double taxation agreement with Luxembourg, easing the restrictions on the exchange of tax information between the two countries.

It is...

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Supporters of Luxembourg’s Tax Haven Status Silence Criticism
August 5th, 2009
Nick Shaxson and John Christenson at the Tax Justice Network have pointed out that a Luxembourg think tank, the Cercle de Coopération, has been forced to withdraw a report that it published which was critical of Luxembourg's status as a secrecy jurisdiction and highlighted the negative effect it had on developing countries. From the TJN blog:

The Cercle has made an extremely important step towards a public debate on tax issues that is long overdue. The study has prompted a furious reaction from various quarterse including, for obvious reasons, Luxembourg's finance industry,...

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The Media Misses Again Regarding OECD Treaty Standards
July 15th, 2009
Apparently nobody at Reuters read my post yesterday about the media's skewed coverage of the OECD grey list and the signing of TIEAs. I wrote regarding the media's coverage of Luxembourg coming off the OECD grey-list:

But there is an entirely separate side to this story that hasn’t permeated the coverage at all: the OECD standards are useless in any practical sense, and under these standards wealthy tax evaders will still feel perfectly safe stashing their money in Luxembourg. As we discuss extensively on this website – the OECD’s standards require a...

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