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The Exchange of Tax Information Portal is an initiative of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes. The Global Forum conducts peer reviews of its member jurisdictions' ability to co-operate with other tax administrations in accordance with the internationally agreed standard. The standard provides for exchange of information on request where it is foreseeably relevant to the administration and enforcement of the domestic tax laws of the requesting jurisdiction. Effective exchange of information requires that jurisdictions ensure information is available, that it can be obtained by the tax authorities and that there are mechanisms in place allowing for the exchange of that information. The Global Forum's peer review process examines both the legal and regulatory aspects of exchange (Phase 1 reviews) and the exchange of information in practice (Phase 2). The EOI Portal will track the development of these peer reviews, including changes that jurisdictions make in response to the Global Forum's recommendations.

Peer Review: Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Phase 2

This report for Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has been published on 29 Oct 2014. You can buy this report, or browse it online below.

Skip directly to the Executive Summary. You may also want to view the tables of determinations and ratings.


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Determinations and Recommendations

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.      
Phase 2 Rating Factors Recommendations
Largely Compliant.   Bearer shares may be held by approved custodians operating outside of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. In such cases direct ownership information on those bearer shares may not always be available in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Furthermore, enforcement of penalties for non-compliance with these obligations may not be possible for those custodians located outside of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines should ensure that information on the direct owners of bearer shares is made fully available within Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in all cases. 
Requirements on service providers to update ownership and identity information in all cases and to immediately obtain such information in case of introduced business have been introduced only recently.  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines should monitor the operations of the new provisions by service providers on keeping updated ownership and identity information and on obtaining such information immediately in case of introduced business. 
Although the existence of a register of members in respect of IBCs and LLCs is monitored through the on-site inspections of their registered agents, the obligation to keep these documents only applies to IBCs and LLCs themselves, and no clear penalties apply for failure to comply with this requirement. It is therefore unclear how the Saint Vincent and the Grenadines authorities would enforce the availability of legal ownership information on IBCs and LLCs.  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines should clarify how the availability of legal ownership information on IBCs and LLCs would be enforced. 
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.   During the review period, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines’ laws did not require the keeping of reliable accounting records by International Business Companies, Limited Liability Companies and Co-operatives. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has recently enacted new laws to ensure the keeping of accounting information and underlying documentation by all these entities in line with the international standard. Since the amendments are very recent they have not been tested in practice.  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines should monitor the practical implementation of the new laws to ensure that all International Business Companies, Limited Liability Companies and Co-operatives keep accounting records and underlying documentation and that all types of information are available in line with the international standard. 
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
Largely Compliant.   While enforcement provisions to ensure that information on bank account holders is available where the account holder is introduced by a foreign AML-regulated institution exist, those provisions have been introduced only recently.  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines should monitor the operations of the new provisions on introduced business and their enforcement. 
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.     Saint Vincent and the Grenadines should continue to develop its exchange of information 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.   Saint Vincent and the Grenadines law allows information that is obtained pursuant to its EOI agreements to be disclosed to persons employed or authorised by the government of the requesting party to oversee data protection. This disclosure does not require the express written consent of the EOI partner providing the information.  Ensure that any future disclosure of information to the proposed data protection agency is in line with the international standard. 
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
Largely Compliant.   Saint Vincent and the Grenadines has committed resources and has in place organisational processes for exchange of information that appear to be adequate for dealing with incoming EOI requests. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines did process only two EOI requests during the three-year period under review. Consequently, the organisational processes have not been sufficiently tested in practice.  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines should keep monitoring the practical implementation of the organisational processes of the competent authority as well as the level of resources committed to EOI purposes, in particular taking account of any significant changes to the volume of incoming EOI requests, to ensure that both the processes and level of resources are adequate for effective EOI in practice.