Bulletin 42

Printable Version

PORTUGAL: Mandatory reporting of bank accounts

Portugal has formally enacted Law No. 17/2019, requiring banks to report residents’ financial accounts above EUR50,000 by 31 July of each year. Transitional deadlines allow 60 days for reporting of accounts existing before the 15 February 2019 date of entry into force, and 90 days for new accounts.

EUROPE: CJEU issues key rulings on tax avoidance and beneficial ownership

Last month, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) issued a series of important judgments dealing with tax avoidance and beneficial ownership in the context of the EU Parent-Subsidiary Directive and the Interest and Royalties Directive.

TAX TRANSPARENCY: OECD clears seven more jurisdictions as largely compliant

The OECD’s Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes has issued a further seven peer-review reports, declaring Hong Kong, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, North Macedonia, Spain and the Turks and Caicos Islands to be largely compliant with its updated standard incorporating beneficial ownership of all legal entities.

LUXEMBOURG: Constraints placed on foreign tax authorities’ disclosure requests

Luxembourg’s parliament has amended the Law on Exchange of Information in Tax Matters to require its tax authorities to verify that information requested by a foreign government has ‘foreseeable relevance’ to a tax investigation, in accordance with the European Court of Justice’s judgment in the Berlioz case (C-682/15). The new law, passed on 1 March 2019, also grants the request’s recipient a right of appeal to the administrative court.

FRANCE: Limited voluntary disclosure service for companies

France’s tax authorities have announced a voluntary disclosure service for companies to reveal irregularities discovered by new owners and buyers of a company. These include illegal or abusive arrangements as defined by the Ministry for the Economy and Finance; transactions considered abuse of law, fraudulent activities or concealed activities; undeclared permanent establishments and unlawful deductions of interest on a loan granted by a foreign company. Certain abuses in the taxation of directors are also covered.

EUROPE: EU parliament votes for end to ‘golden visa’ schemes

The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to adopt a report of its TAX3 committee requesting EU Member States to phase out all investment-based citizenship and residency schemes as soon as possible.

GREECE: Beneficial ownership must be declared to central register

Legal persons and other corporate entities in Greece are now obliged to declare their ultimate beneficial owners to a central register held by the Greek finance ministry in accordance with the Anti-Money Laundering Law 4557/2018, which implements the EU Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive.

MONEY LAUNDERING: Swedbank drawn into Danske Bank allegations

The headquarters of Swedbank were raided on the 27th March by Sweden’s Economic Crime Authority, in an investigation of suspicious transactions worth SKR40 billion (USD4.3 billion) allegedly made between Swedbank and Danske Bank customers’ accounts in the Baltic states. Its Chief Executive, Birgitte Bonessen, says no bank employees have been charged. Danske Bank’s Estonian branch was used for EUR200 billion of suspicious payments between 2007 and 2015.

Source: STEP

Please contact David Marinelli should you wish to discuss any matter relating to jurisdiction & compliance risk management or asset protection pertaining to your business or your clients.