UAE says it expects to be taken off EU’s tax blacklist
DUBAI, Dec 7: The United Arab Emirates expects to be taken off the European Union's tax-haven blacklist after it meets criteria for transparency set by the EU, the UAE government said on Thursday.
"We have committed to a reform process which will be finalised by October 2018, and we are absolutely confident this will ensure the UAE is swiftly removed from the list," the government said in a statement.
On Tuesday, EU finance ministers adopted a blacklist of 17 jurisdictions deemed to be tax havens, including the UAE and Bahrain, in a step to counter worldwide tax avoidance.
Countries on the blacklist may no longer be used by EU institutions for international financial operations, and transactions involving them could be subject to closer scrutiny. That could affect capital flows through the UAE, which is the Middle East's main banking center.
The UAE government said it was surprised and disappointed at being listed since it had been working with the EU since early 2017 to satisfy transparency criteria, and the sole outstanding issue was implementation of the BEPS Minimum Standard.
BEPS is an agreement signed by some OECD member countries to tackle tax avoidance strategies that allow multinational companies to shift profits artificially to low or no-tax locations. -AFP