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Published 14th October 2009, 1:42pm

The Cayman Islands signed a Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) with France via an exchange of letters on 5 October 2009.

The agreement, which is Caymanís thirteenth, was considered legally binding following receipt and signature by French Minister, Mr Eric Woerth, Minister for Budget Management, Public Accounts of the Civil Service and State Reform. The agreement was signed on behalf of the Cayman Islands by the Leader of Government Business/Premier Designate and Minister for Financial Services, the Honourable McKeeva Bush.

Mr Bush said: "This signing, secured by the Ministry of Financial Services negotiating team signifies the Cayman Islands continued commitment to OECD standards for transparency and exchange of information on tax matters. The Cayman Islands is committed to endorsing OECD standards and we are determined to implement them fully."

Following a mid-year acceleration to expand its network of signed agreements, the Cayman Islands received international recognition in mid-August when it ascended to the OECDís "white list" of jurisdictions that have substantially implemented the internationally agreed tax standard. In September, the Cayman Islands were elected a member of the Steering Group of the OECD Global Forum.

Bush added: "We hope that this agreement will act as a catalyst for French companies looking to diversify into new markets. Whilst providing the assurance of mutual cooperation, market access and smooth capital flows, we are hoping it will contribute to growth in international business and to stimulating our local economy."

Notes to Editors

  • Tax Information Exchange Agreements (TIEAs) enable tax authorities to access information about any persons who are seeking to evade payment of tax and also help disclose assets that have not been reported in the home country. Information that would typically be relevant in such investigations includes information regarding bank accounts and beneficial ownership of companies or trusts established in the Cayman Islands.
  • The Cayman Islands have 13 bilateral tax information agreements with the following countries: Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, France, United Kingdom and the United States.
  • In addition to arrangements under the OECD initiative, the Cayman Islands has bilateral tax treaties with the 27 EU member states under which it reports savings income information, pursuant to measures equivalent to the European Union Savings Directive.
  • The Cayman Islandsí unilateral arrangement for tax information assistance currently covers 12 countries, namely Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Germany, Ireland, Japan, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Slovak Republic, South Africa, the United Kingdom and Switzerland.
  • The Cayman Islands has been an active participant in the OECD Global Forum on Taxation. In May 2000, the Cayman Islands was one of the first non-OECD jurisdictions to adopt the principles of transparency and exchange of information in tax matters, based on a level playing field. As an early adopter, the Cayman Islands has been involved in the development of the OECDís standards for effective exchange of information in tax matters and is a member of the Global Forumís level playing field sub-group, along with other OECD and non-OECD colleagues.

For more information, please contact the Financial Services Secretariat at (345) 945-5819 or via email at