Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Dunne: new agreement makes mockery of tax haven claims

Hon Peter Dunne
Minister of Revenue

Monday 8 October 2012 Media Statement

Dunne: new agreement makes mockery of tax haven claims

Revenue Minister Peter Dunne today announced that New Zealand will be signing a multilateral convention on tax assistance later this month, as he dismissed claims that New Zealand is a tax haven for foreign trusts.

“The key identifying characteristics of tax havens are secrecy and lack of transparency. Those are simply not factors here in New Zealand.

“In fact, New Zealand’s foreign trust taxation rules and treaty exchange of information arrangements and practices were scrutinised in detail last year by the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes review and they were approved,” Mr Dunne said.

“Our legislation for taxing trusts is fully transparent. The rules were in fact introduced in the 1980s to prevent tax avoidance by New Zealand residents.

“They are also consistent with the wider international norm that a country should not tax non-residents on foreign-sourced income – in short, we don’t tax non-New Zealanders on income not earned in New Zealand,” Mr Dunne said.

However, New Zealand’s tax legislation contains effective disclosure and record-keeping requirements that ensure Inland Revenue can access full details of the trust and provide that information to tax treaty partners as required.

New Zealand will sign the Convention on Mutual Administration Assistance in Tax Matters, as amended by the 2010 Protocol, which is a multilateral treaty that opened for signature in 1988.

Formulated jointly by the OECD and the Council of Europe, the Convention will give Inland Revenue the ability to request help from other tax authorities in detecting and preventing tax evasion, and collecting outstanding tax debts from absconding taxpayers.

“This is an important step and consistent with New Zealand’s approach to tax matters, and frankly, makes a mockery of tax haven assertions,” Mr Dunne said.

New Zealand has a wide network of tax treaty partners, including 37 double tax agreements and a growing network of tax information exchange agreements.

“The Government does not want to tax people more than what is prescribed under current law, but will act firmly where tax evasion is suspected.

“Deliberately artificial tax structures designed with the purpose of defeating New Zealand’s tax laws will attract Inland Revenue’s scrutiny,” he said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Disobeying The Law: Police Censorship Of Crime Research “An Outrage”

The Green Party is calling on Police Minister Michael Woodhouse to ensure Police scrap controversial contracts that place onerous restrictions on academic researchers’ access to Police data, the Green Party says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news