Tag Archives: Pascal Saint-Amans

OECD Tax Chief: ‘Paradise Papers’ Activity Mostly, If Not Totally, Legal

A parting note to that prior discussion of the so-called “Paradise Papers.” Vanessa Houlder reported the following on the Financial Times (UK) website Monday:

But for tax experts, the conclusions were less clear. They said the structures revealed so far in the new cache were very different from those exposed in a previous leak, last year’s Panama Papers. Pascal Saint-Amans, the top tax official at the Paris-based OECD said: “They are quite different from the Panama Papers.” He said the schemes in question were mostly, if not totally, legal. “Some are not even questionable from a legitimacy point of view.”

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

I’ll leave readers with this amusing bit from across the pond on the Daily Express (UK) website yesterday. Stephen Pollard wrote:

Take the headlines about the Queen. “Revealed: Queen’s private estate invested millions of pounds offshore” screamed The Guardian. The paper “revealed” that Her Majesty “through the Duchy of Lancaster has held and still holds investments via funds that have put money into an array of businesses, including the off-licence chain Threshers and the retailer BrightHouse, which has been criticised for exploiting thousands of poor families and vulnerable people”.

Are they really suggesting it is inappropriate for the Queen to hold investments anywhere except Britain? What about Bermuda or the Cayman Islands where, er, she is their head of state? She’s not allowed to invest in her own territories?

As for the phrase “offshore”: it is essentially meaningless. Britain is “offshore” for anyone who isn’t in Britain. One of the secrets of our economic success in recent decades is that we are an attractive place to invest money – offshore, that is, for the rest of the world.

If investing offshore is so appalling for the Queen, presumably it is for everyone else too – which means, from the perspective of Britain, everyone else on Earth except for us. Which means an end to all foreign investment in the UK. Then there is the hypocrisy of the reaction. According to Jeremy Corbyn anyone putting money into tax havens should “apologise”. As the Guido Fawkes website pointed out: the Labour Party rents its HQ via a tax exempt property fund based in Jersey. Nothing wrong with that, it’s completely legal…

But the gold medal for hypocrisy surely lies with The Guardian, which published the Paradise Papers and fulminated against people taking advantage of laws to minimise their taxes. Without mentioning, of course, The Guardian’s own “GMG Hazel Acquisition 1 Limited”, which is based in the Caymans– to minimise its tax payments…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Not our circus, not our monkeys, as Offshore Safe Deposit Boxes merely focuses on the secured storage of legally-obtained and owned personal belongings outside the United States for a variety of legitimate reasons. And not offshore finance.

Still, begging to pointed out considering all the hoopla over the “Paradise Papers” in the legacy media these days?

By Christopher E. Hill
Offshore Safe Deposit Boxes (www.offshoresafedepositboxes.com)

Sources:

Houlder, Vanessa. “Paradise Papers spark political backlash over offshore finance.” Financial Times. 6 Nov. 2017. (https://www.ft.com/content/70aca220-c30a-11e7-b2bb-322b2cb39656). 9 Nov. 2017.

Pollard, Stephen. “Hypocrisy over the Paradise Papers is truly breathtaking says STEPHEN POLLARD.” Daily Express. 8 Nov. 2017. (http://www.express.co.uk/comment/expresscomment/876903/Paradise-Papers-hypocrisy-shocking). 9 Nov. 2017.

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