(CNS Business): Financial Services Minister Wayne Panton says he is optimistic that the report on the local financial service sector’s compliance with international standards will be a good one. A team of assessors from the OECD Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes visited Cayman earlier this month to conduct the peer review on how well the jurisdiction is doing on exchanging tax information.
“We now look forward to working with the Global Forum over the coming months to finalise the report,” Panton said in a release from his ministry this week. “Given our track record on tax cooperation over the years, we remain optimistic that our regime is in line with global standards.”
The expert assessors are selected by the Global Forum to conduct the peer reviews and do not represent the organisations for which they work. Cayman’s three expert assessors were Mary O’Leary of the Global Forum Secretariat, Virginia Tarris from the US Internal Revenue Service, and Mukhta Toofanee from the Mauritius Revenue Authority.
The intensive three-day assessment began on Monday, 9 January, and was hosted by the Ministry of Financial Services, Commerce and Environment. The assessors also met with the attorney general and visited the International Tax Cooperation, Financial Services Policy and Legislation departments, as well as the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, the General Registry, the Financial Reporting Authority and the Cayman Islands Compliance Association.
The peer review was formally launched in in September 2016. In preparation for this month’s onsite visit, the Global Forum issued a detailed questionnaire to the financial services ministry for completion on Cayman’s application of the international standard.
All of the Global Forum’s 137 member countries, including Cayman, will be assessed during this current round of peer reviews. The reviews are conducted under the Global Forum’s revised and strengthened terms of reference, which assess each member country’s legal framework and, importantly, the effectiveness of their practical implementation of the international standard.