Cayman Islands ‘fundamental overhaul’ of secrecy laws

The Cayman Islands government has published the Confidential Information Disclosure Bill 2016, which proposes the abolition of the current criminal offence for disclosure of confidential information, other than ‘in the ordinary course of business’; and replacing it with a new regime specifying when information may be disclosed.

 

Colin Riegels, a partner at international law firm Harneys, describes this proposal as a ‘fundamental overhaul’ of the Cayman Islands’ confidentiality laws. Together with a company law amendment prohibiting the issue of new bearer shares after 13 May 2016, this Bill represents a move by the Cayman government to ‘assist global efforts to tackle tax evasion and corruption and to increase transparency’, says Riegels.

 

Nevertheless, the Cayman Islands government continues to resist an agreement to share beneficial ownership information, until such time as a common standard is agreed by all G20 and OECD countries, including the US.

 

Source: Tax Journal

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