Free Offshore Bank Accounts

EU ministers to thrash out tax clampdown.

Summary: As tens of millions languish on the dole with EU austerity
blamed for deepening recession, …

As tens of millions languish on the dole with EU austerity blamed
for deepening recession, finance ministers will switch their focus
Tuesday from bailout negotiations to the pursuit of a trillion-euro
annual tax-fraud bounty. European Union governments are looking to ready
a package that will scrap national banking secrecy laws, and are called
to overcome holdout opposition from Austria after Luxembourg said it
would loosen its policies at a May 22 summit of leaders on the issue.
The drive to uncover revenues stashed away in offshore accounts is
backed by other non-EU governments in the Group of 20 major
international economies. On Friday at G7 talks in England, ministers
including US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew firmed up their commitment to
tax evasion

, which is illegal, and tax avoidance, which
occurs when individuals and companies take advantage of legal loopholes.
Britain has made the issue a priority of its presidencies of the G7 and
G8, and Britain’s
Chancellor of the Exchequer
The senior finance minister in the British government and a member of the prime minister’s cabinet.


 George Osborne said:
“It is vital that both developed and developing countries collect
the tax that is due to them.” The ministers are meeting on Tuesday
following talks among the 17


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 states on Monday evening taking
stock of progress on bailouts for Cyprus and Greece. Austria is seeking
a compromise that would preserve banking secrecy for its nationals but
open accounts held by foreigners to scrutiny. Chancellor Werner Faymann
and domestic rivals have said three conditions must be met however,
including respecting Austria’s bilateral tax agreements with
Switzerland and Liechtenstein, and a requirement that authorities
identify the financial owners of shell corporations and trusts. A
statement from Vienna also reiterated that “Austrian banking
secrecy for resident taxpayers must not be affected.” The Alpine
republic, especially its vocal Finance Minister Maria Fekter, has
repeatedly called for closer investigations of “the real tax
havens”, citing British-dependent territories such as the Channel
Islands, Gibraltar and the Cayman Islands. She has previously also
warned that the
An imposing of restrictions or controls:  
 on money-laundering risks freeing governments
to “snoop” into bank accounts. EU Tax Commissioner Algirdas
Semeta has said he expected a breakthrough on the automatic sharing of
customer bank data. Agreement is expected on a legal update covering
savings taxation that has been stalled since 2008, plus a mandate to
negotiate with Switzerland and other third parties on the exchange of
bank account information. European Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso
wrote to EU heads last week to say that the principle of cross-border
sharing of information should be applied to all types of state revenues.
The EU has been tightening up on tax evasion and money laundering since
the 2008 global financial crisis highlighted the problem alongside the
reckless speculative fever that sparked banking and economic crises. On
normally dominant eurozone issues, the talks are expected to see
go-aheads for the disbursement of three billion euros ($3.9 billion) in
loans to Cyprus via a rescue fund set up in the wake of the Greek
financial collapse. The ministers are also expected to give the green
light to another 7.5 billion euros of the agreed Greek package between
May and June, following checks on conditions imposed in negotiations
with the

See International Monetary Fund (IMF).
. No final decision is expected, however, on easing
Portugal’s long-term repayment terms on its bailout after a deal
was struck on Ireland. New Italian Finance Minister Fabrizio Saccomanni
is expected to reassure his colleagues that Rome is fully focused on
taming the country’s high debt levels.

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