Article

Looking for Plan B: What Next for Island Hosts of Offshore Finance?

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  • Tax Justice Network
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Abstract

This paper examines offshore finance centres and tax havens that are hosted by small island economies (SIEs). In many cases, hosting offshore finance has been a lucrative activity for SIEs since the 1960s in terms of employment (direct and indirect) and overall contribution to GDP and government revenues. Despite the scale and reach of the global offshore economy, at present many SIE hosts face an unsettled future in light of significant international pressure from nation states, international organisations such as the EU and OECD and, increasingly, from civil society in both the developed and less-developed world. Given the economic importance of hosting offshore finance for many SIEs around the world, the development options facing many island jurisdictions are discussed. The paper poses the fundamental question: what has changed since the major initiatives around the year 2000? Then the situation facing many SIE hosts, the changing global political economy and their shifting negotiations and alliances within it are discussed.

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... This was a G20 initiative that re ects the heavy burden left in government nances due to the nancial crisis and global recession initiated in 2008, which lead to the creation of policies to reduce tax evasion and avoidance and obtain more revenue (Bilicka and Fuest, 2014). Hampton and Christensen (2011) mention TIEAs as policies drawn to increase transparency in nancial markets and reinforce tax affair cooperation, seeing as there is a requirement that tax havens sign at least twelve TIEAs in order to avoid being classi ed as non-cooperative jurisdiction. According to the study performed by Bilicka and Fuest (2014), OECD initiative for tax information Exchange was a success, since it encouraged tax havens to sign TIEAs with the right countries, not being evident any clear sabotage attempts to sign treaties with countries with insigni cant economic relations. ...
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The main goal of this study is to analyse and characterize the empirical research produced in the time period between the years 2008 and 2018 on tax havens. In order to achieve this goal, an analysis of the selected sample was performed in order to characterize the investigators and the content of their articles. The results of the study show that collective authorship is predominant, being that articles with two authors are more frequent, and the majority of the researchers in the sample contributed with only one article. Geographically, the continent with the highest contribution was Europe and analysing by country the United States of America held the highlighted role. Regarding the universities, Australian universities presented more affiliated authors. With regards to the content of the articles, the thirty six articles from the sample were published in twenty seven different journals, being that 2015 was the year with the most publications. Other than the topic tax havens, tax avoidance and tax evasion where the most addressed themes by the researchers. Subject classification codes: H26; F23; M41
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"Small states have learned in recent decades that capital accumulates where taxes are low; as a result, tax havens have increasingly competed for the attention of international investors with tax and regulatory concessions. Economically powerful countries including France, Britain, Japan, and the United States, however, wished to stanch the offshore flow of domestic taxable capital. Since 1998 the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has attempted to impose common tax regulations on more than three dozen small states. In a fascinating book based on fieldwork and interviews in twenty-two countries in the Caribbean, North America, Europe, and islands in the Pacific and Indian Oceans, J. C. Sharman shows how the struggle was decided in favor of the tax havens, which eventually avoided common regulation. No other book on tax havens is based on such extensive fieldwork, and no other author has had access to so many of the key decision makers who played roles in the conflict between onshore and offshore Sharman suggests that microstates succeeded in their struggle with great powers because of their astute deployment of reputation and effective rhetorical self-positioning. In effect, they persuaded a transnational audience that the OECD was being untrue to its own values by engaging in a hypocritical, bullying exercise inimical to free competition." Yes Yes
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Acemoglu, Johnson and Robinson have dramatically challenged the tendency of economists to confine their empirical search for the causes of economic growth to the recent past. They argue that the kind of institutions established by European colonialists, either protecting private property or extracting rents, resulted in the poorer parts of the pre-colonial world becoming some of the richest economies of today; while transforming some of the more prosperous parts of the non-European world of 1500 into the poorest economies today. This view has been further elaborated for Africa by Nunn, with reference to slave trading. Drawing on African and comparative economic historiography, the present paper endorses the importance of examining growth theories against long-term history: revealing relationships that recur because the situations are similar, as well as because of path dependence as such. But it also argues that the causal relationships involved are more differentiated than is recognised in AJR's formulations. By compressing different historical periods and paths, the 'reversal' thesis over-simplifies the causation. Relatively low labour productivity was a premise of the external slave trades; though the latter greatly reinforced the relative poverty of many Sub-Saharan economies. Again, it is important to distinguish settler and non-settler economies within colonial Africa itself. In the latter case it was in the interests of colonial regimes to support, rather than simply extract from, African economic enterprise. Finally, economic rent and economic growth have often been joint products, including in pre-colonial and colonial Africa; the kinds of institutions that favoured economic growth in certain historical contexts were not necessarily optimal for that purpose in others. AJR have done much to bring development economics and economic history together. The next step is a more flexible conceptual framework, and a more complex explanation.
Article
This paper discusses Offshore Finance Centres (OFCs) in islands using Jersey as its case study. Jersey has become an increasingly important conduit for the global circulation of capital, both for Transnational Corporations and wealthy individuals.
Article
The stock of wealth held offshore is estimated at US$6 trillion. Many small island economies (SIEs) host offshore finance centers, and some SIEs are highly dependent upon offshore finance. Extreme examples have over 90% of government revenues derived from finance sector activities. Since 1998 a series of international initiatives have been launched to combat harmful tax practices, money laundering, and inadequate financial regulation. These initiatives will transform the economies of many SIEs. This paper explores the dependence of many SIEs upon offshore finance and the barriers to diversification arising from their smallness and unique political economies.
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Londres ou New York sont aussi des paradis fiscaux
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Letter to members of the States of Jersey relating to discussions with UK government about the position of the EU Code of Conduct Group on Business Taxation
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CFP strategic memo on OECD strategy
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Tax haven clean-up hurts the Pacific”
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Close up: a storm in a haven, broadcast on BBC2
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How the tide turned against the tax avoiders
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