WBrief: Tax haven fightback unco-ordinated - Spear's Magazine

WBrief: Tax haven fightback unco-ordinated

European international financial centres under pressure to open up their affairs to foreign governments hunting alleged tax cheats appeared to lack a specific plan on how to fight back following high-level talks in Luxembourg at the weekend, according to Reuters.

European international financial centres under pressure to open up their affairs to foreign governments hunting alleged tax cheats appeared to lack a specific plan on how to fight back following high-level talks in Luxembourg at the weekend, according to Reuters.

Swiss Finance Minister Hans-Rudolf Merz met ministers from Luxembourg and Austria, the only two European Union states that still retain bank secrecy, and the prime minister of Liechtenstein during closed-door talks in Senningen.

Meanwhile, Agence France-Presse, said that a member of the Swiss parliament, Alfred Heer, who is of the far-right Swiss People’s Party, has told the daily newspaper Bild that top German public officials had secret bank accounts in Switzerland. Mr Heer has threatened to out them if Germany purchased stolen data from Swiss-based banks.

Germany has angered Switzerland by agreeing to purchase a stolen disc containing the names of 1,500 Swiss account holders who may have sought to evade taxes via Swiss accounts. The German government is reported to have moved to pay €2.5 million to buy data from an anonymous whistle-blower.

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