Washington, April 20:
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley here has sought urgent implementation of the automatic exchange of financial account information globally to tackle the menace of black money.
“We strongly feel that there is a need to ensure that the common reporting standards on automatic exchange of information should be implemented on a fully reciprocal global basis and those countries which have not yet committed to the timeline of 2017 or 2018 should do it without any further delay,” he said at the weekend’s annual Spring Meeting of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.
As offshore tax havens are obliged to provide information on cases only when investigation is launched, offshore tax evasion and flow of illicit money can be tackled only by the free flow of account information exchanged by countries on an automatic basis, Jaitley told the global forum.
He said the forum should ensure that every country is effectively implementing common reporting standards, have the necessary legal and regulatory framework, and are also exchanging information in practice.
India has strongly advocated fast implementation of the automatic exchange of tax information globally, within the time-frame agreed to by the G20 countries, Minister of State for Finance Jayant Sinha told a meeting of the G20 nations’ finance ministers and central bank governors in Istanbul in February.
At the G20 Brisbane summit last November, leaders endorsed a new global transparency standard by which more than 90 jurisdictions will begin automatic exchange of tax information, using a common reporting standard by 2017-18.
India has no official estimates of illegal money stashed away overseas, but the unofficial assessments put the figure from $466 billion to $1.4 trillion. (IANS)