TBILISI, GEORGIA, NOVEMBER 3RD, 2016 — Prime Minister Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris has challenged the top brass at the Global Forum at its 9th Meeting on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes to work to provide a win-win solution for all.
Dr. Harris said St. Kitts and Nevis, as a responsible member of the international community, has supported the work of the Global Forum. However, Prime Minister Harris admonished the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), World Bank, and EU officials that there are “no one size which fits all” members of the Global Forum.
In that regard, the Prime Minister called for special and differential treatment of small vulnerable states like St. Kitts and Nevis and for flexibility to be built into implementation standards.
The Prime Minister wants the Global Forum to establish an institutional response that reflects the differential needs, capacities and capabilities of member states. Prime Minister Harris went further to suggest that the Global Forum must bring more support to small vulnerable states and ensure compensatory mechanisms are in place to ensure a win-win situation for all.
Meantime, Prime Minister Harris warned the EU that its proposed scorecard system of evaluating countries for blacklisting was problematic and undermined the legitimacy of the inclusive approach based on participation, dialogue and consensus of the Global Forum.
Prime Minister Harris admonished efforts of the EU to create a second and alternative mechanism to adjudge transparency in tax systems of member countries. “We cannot have competing standards. There must be one voice,” said Dr. Harris.
The Global Forum meeting is being supported by the OECD and the Ministry of Finance and Revenue Service of Georgia. Over 130 jurisdictions are participating in the Global Forum.