Rabat – EU ministers have called on Morocco and 54 other countries listed in the gray zone to comply with the EU’s tax transparency standards by the end of 2019, having also removed several states from the Paradise Papers blacklist.
The 55 countries on the gray list have all assured the EU of their collaboration as well as their willingness to apply the standards of good tax behavior issued by the Union’s financial advisers, reported Agence France Presse (AFP) today.
Meanwhile, EU finance ministers removed eight countries from its 17-country tax haven blacklist after “they committed to cooperating on tax and abiding by EU standards.
The Paradise Papers were a massive document leak carried out by International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ). It revealed a vast tax abuse network of over 25,000 companies owned by individuals from 180 countries, stemming all the way back to 1950.
“Eight jurisdictions have been removed from the EU’s list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes, following commitments made at a high political level to remedy EU concerns,” an EU statement said. These countries include Barbados, Grenada, South Korea, Macau, Mongolia, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates, as well as Panama.
The remaining blacklisted countries are: Bahrain, Guam, Marshall Islands, American Samoa, Namibia, Palau, Saint Lucia, Samoa and Trinidad, and Tobago.
Most of the 13.4 million documents were leaked from Appleby, a law firm based in Bermuda.
The 119-year-old company assists wealthy clients in circumventing millions of dollars in tax burden by placing ownership of assets–including companies, private aircraft, real estate, and yachts–in small tropical islands that “charge zero taxes and [do] not ask many questions,” says The Guardian.