Tax havens under pressure to share black money secrets

At the G20 Cannes summit in November 2011 OECD would recommend tough action against tax havens

Global bodies are putting “enormous pressure” on tax havens like Switzerland and Luxembourg, including threat of sanctions, to change opaque laws and share information that will help countries like India trace huge sums of black money stashed abroad, said a senior OECD official.

Jeffrey Owens, director of the OECD Centre for Tax Policy and Administration said OECD was working closely with G20, the group of 20 most powerful nations, to force tax havens to be transparent and cooperate with other countries to help curb tax evasion and money laundering.

“You have to be transparent. You have to give access to information and you have to have legal instruments in place to exchange the information. We have to do this in a way that we achieve a level playing field,” Owens told.

“We are making sure that all countries, including OECD member countries like Switzerland, Luxembourg and Austria, implement the decisions. Otherwise they will face sanctions,” said Owens.