On 25 November 2013¸ the Republic of Malta and the Cayman Islands signed a Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) – which provides for a full exchange of information between the two jurisdictions on tax matters.
The agreement was signed by Cayman Financial Services Minister Wayne Panton and Finance Minister¸ Professor Edward Scicluna.
Describing the TIEAs as “much more than signatures and handshakes” Panton said they reaffirm individual countries’ commitments to uphold international standards set by the OECD’s Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes.
Minister Scicluna said this Agreement “demonstrated good practice in the global financial sector” whilst Minister Panton remarked that “this level of cooperation signifies the goodwill that exists between Malta and the Cayman Islands.”
Panton explained however that TIEA are tools which governments can use in the fight against financial crime and tax evasion.
“These agreements are implemented by competent authorities who understand the legal nuances and importance of cooperating in the fight against illegal activity such as tax evasion and money laundering. Without them¸ criminals would continue to drain public coffers¸ and deprive both developed and developing countries of economic opportunities¸” he added.
Both signatories confirmed the agreement included all standard means to ensure due process was followed in tax information requests to both Malta and the Cayman Islands respectively¸ including¸ for example¸ provisions to protect confidentiality of information.