The UK and Liechtenstein have agreed to reach a formal tax information exchange agreement (TIEA) in the near future, following bi-lateral negotiations on tax transparency.
Senior representatives of the Liechtenstein Government and HMRC met ahead of the G20 summit to discuss how to progress increased tax transparency between the two countries, building on the publication of the Liechtenstein Declaration on 12 March.
Liechtenstein asked for technical assistance from the UK to help determine the identity of UK residents with beneficial interests in Liechtenstein structures and bank accounts to ensure the bank secrecy and privacy rules could not be abused and used for tax evasion.
Legal certainty for UK taxpayers, Liechtenstein and the Liechtenstein financial centre will be part of the discussion.
Financial secretary to the Treasury, Stephen Timms, says: "The outcome of these discussions demonstrates that we are fast moving forward into a new era of transparency and openness in global tax administration, founded on exchange on tax information."
Timms says the move is good news for honest tax payers who pay their fair share as well as in terms of protecting the revenues that fund vital public services.
Dave Hartnett, permanent secretary for tax at HMRC, says: "These were unprecedented discussions and we are looking forward to more detailed talks."
A TIEA is a "further vital step in ensuring that dishonest taxpayers have no place to hide, while enabling honest taxpayers to legitimately engage with the Liechtenstein financial services industry," he adds.
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