Panama papers: India discusses tax info exchange with global joint task force to plug evasion

FirstPost.com -- India has participated in the global joint task force meet to discuss with countries information exchange as it looks to pursue work on the Panama Papers, the finance ministry said on Tuesday.

The Joint International Taskforce on Shared Intelligence and Collaboration (JITSIC) meeting was reconvened in Paris in the last week of June 2017 to pursue the work on the Panama Papers.

"Based on legal instruments under the OECD and Council of Europe Multilateral Convention and tax treaties, a number of countries shared information in confidential Competent Authorities sessions, on structures that facilitate, enable and promote tax avoidance/evasion. India also shared its experience in this regard," the statement said.

Demonstrating the value and strength of JITSIC, 30 project participant countries have continued to exchange, analyse and act on information about taxpayers and intermediaries connected to Mossack.

In the past six months, more than 570 requests for information have been sent to 32 countries. India has also sent several requests for information to various jurisdictions in the Panama Paper cases since the last meeting in January 2017.

"JITSIC members have established the capability to allow for fast, effective and coordinated multilateral responses to any future data leaks and are sharing the same. JITSIC will continue to identify more arrangements as countries continue their investigations and share intelligence and new data comes to light," the statement said.

Collaboration with JITSIC has been useful for India in its fight against offshore tax evasion, it added.

The Panama papers refer to 11.5 million leaked documents published by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists with details of offshore entities set up by the law firm Mossack Fonseca over 40 years.

Some of the entities set up by the law firm were shell corporations used for illegal purposes, including fraud, tax evasion and evading international sanctions.


The papers also included details of entities set up by over 500 Indian nationals.

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