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Jersey welcomes new UK tax rules with open arms

The island of Jersey, one of the locales that is often under fire for facilitating tax avoidance for British nationals, is welcoming of new UK tax regulations.

You would think that our little island neighbour, which has earned a bit of a reputation of a tax haven over the years, might be a bit recalcitrant to give up the cash cow that has been high-powered multinationals and British contractors funneling funds into their coffers, but the truth is that Jersey is champing at the bit to get started in co-operating with their counterparts in the UK to prevent tax evasion. In fact, new regulations are going into place that will see the Jersey Financial Services Commission in overseeing a programme that will earmark any clients that might have some involvement in a tax avoidance or tax evasion scheme.

The regulations have teeth, as well, as the JFSC has been empowered to revoke the business license of any Jersey-based financial service company that engages in such a programme. Jersey ministers came forward recently in a joint statement that said supporting the UK’s goals in stamping out tax avoidance are near and dear to their hearts, though they were quick to pass the buck so to speak to the British Government when it came to determining what exactly constitutes lawful financial planning and unlawful tax avoidance.

In other words, Jersey is saying they’ll do whatever they can to make it easy for the UK to go after tax avoiders by handing personal information over, but they’re not about to change their own legislation or regulations. I know it sounds like a bit of a thumb in the eye, but it could be worse – Jersey could have told the UK to jog on and not divulge any information at all, as is their right. Of course playing nice is in the best interests of Jersey – it’s a bit of a no-brainer after all, considering how it’s a bit hard to pick a fight with a world superpower like the UK. Don’t believe me? Well why don’t we go ahead and ask how the Argentinians enjoyed it a few decades ago.

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