Bahamas, The

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Overall Phase 2 Rating is Largely Compliant

Table of Determinations and Ratings of the Phase 2 Review

Jurisdictions should ensure that ownership and identity information for all relevant entities and arrangements is available to their competent authorities. (ToR A.1)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.   Most fund administrators in The Bahamas are subject to CDD requirements under the regulatory and AML regime. However, there may be a limited number of investment funds that are not subject to such requirements. In these cases the simplified due diligence procedure applicable to investment funds may not ensure that full ownership information is available on investment funds in all cases.  The Bahamas should ensure that in cases where the simplified due diligence procedure is applied, full ownership information is maintained in respect of all investment funds. 
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  The Registrar does not have a regular system of monitoring of compliance with ownership and identity information keeping requirements in respect of all registered entities and penalties for non-compliance are unenforced in practice. Whilst most entities are regulated or must engage a service provider that will be subject to monitoring, the verification of beneficial ownership in respect of legal entities may mean that this supervision will not cover the obligation to maintain complete ownership information in all cases.  The Bahamas should ensure that its monitoring and enforcement powers are sufficiently broad and exercised in practice to ensure the availability of ownership and identity information in all cases. 
Jurisdictions should ensure that reliable accounting records are kept for all relevant entities and arrangements. (ToR A.2)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.  Following the 2011 and 2013 enactment of comprehensive accounting record obligations, The Bahamas is currently developing a system of monitoring. Prior to these legislative amendments, The Bahamas was unable to provide accounting information for EOI purposes in all cases where it was requested. To date, The Bahamas has no enforcement experience to ensure the availability of accounting information.  The Bahamas should monitor the implementation of the accounting record-keeping obligations and should ensure that its enforcement powers are sufficiently exercised in practice. 
Banking information should be available for all account-holders. (ToR A.3)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
Competent authorities should have the power to obtain and provide information that is the subject of a request under an exchange of information arrangement from any person within their territorial jurisdiction who is in possession or control of such information (irrespective of any legal obligation on such person to maintain the secrecy of the information). (ToR B.1)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The rights and safeguards (e.g. notification, appeal rights) that apply to persons in the requested jurisdiction should be compatible with effective exchange of information. (ToR B.2)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
Exchange of information mechanisms should provide for effective exchange of information. (ToR C.1)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The jurisdictions' network of information exchange mechanisms should cover all relevant partners. (ToR C.2)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.     The Bahamas should continue to develop its EOI network with all relevant partners. 
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The jurisdictions' mechanisms for exchange of information should have adequate provisions to ensure the confidentiality of information received. (ToR C.3)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The exchange of information mechanisms should respect the rights and safeguards of taxpayers and third parties. (ToR C.4)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The element is in place.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     
The jurisdiction should provide information under its network of agreements in a timely manner. (ToR C.5)
Determination Factors Recommendations
The assessment team is not in a position to evaluate whether this element is in place, as it involves issues of practice that are dealt with in the Phase 2 review.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Compliant.     

Earlier self-assessment based annual reports entitled Tax Co-operation 2010: Towards a Level Playing Field are also available.