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Opalesque Exclusive: Sarkozy plans huge tax on tax haven, Singapore, Bahamas removed from blacklist after last minute concessions

Monday, February 15, 2010
By Matthias Knab:

French President Sarkozy is stepping up his stance against tax havens. French companies doing business in those countries must deliver half of their income to the state. The French banks will close all operations in the tax havens. Some prominent financial havens like Singapore, Chile, Malaysia, Uruguay, Bahamas and Vanuatu managed only by last-minute concessions to be removed from the black list.

By March, France will increase the withholding tax on dividends, interest and royalties that flow through tax havens from 15 to 50 percent. In addition, the 95-percent tax exemption for dividends paid by a company to its parent company will be canceled if the subsidiary is based in a tax haven.

The French black-list includes the following countries: Anguilla, Belize, Brunei, Costa Rica Dominique, Grenada, Guatemala, Cook Islands, Marshall Islands, Liberia, Montserrat, Nauru, Niue, Panama, Philippines, Saint-Kitts-and-Nevis, St. Lucia and St. Vincent & the Grenadines.

By comparison, OECD’s List of Un-cooperative Tax Havens contained no jurisdiction as of May-09 (Source).

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