In a recent talk (archived) at a Tax Policy Center conference on international corporate taxation, Michael J. Graetz of Columbia University relates the following anecdote:
In Europe, countries generally wanted to strengthen their source-based taxation. The Obama Administration, however, has been determined to strengthen its residence-based taxation of US multinationals. This led a key US Treasury negotiator to remark that, when he was participating in the OECD’s BEPS negotiations, he felt like everyone in the room wanted the US to pay for all the drinks.
That anonymous negotiator represents a country which taxes Canadian disability savings grants, French unemployment assistance, and Hong Kong stimulus payments — all funded by people paying taxes in those places and paid out to people who don’t live in the negotiator’s country. And he’s complaining about other countries wanting to tax economic activity which actually involves their territory (hardly the first time we’ve heard such complaints from one branch of the U.S. government or another).
Well, this is also the country that gave the world the Jackson-Vanik amendment and 26 USC § 891. No surprise there. Meanwhile, Fran Hendy reports that the OECD, rather than complaining about U.S. hypocrisy, has endorsed it — by tweaking its tax haven blacklist criteria so that the U.S. can refuse to participate in the Common Reporting Standard without being declared an “uncooperative jurisdiction”
EU MEP in’t Veld calls out the US Treasury hypocrisy re lack of US reciprocity in her latest questions to the EU Parliament:
12 jul 16
Parliamentary Questions: FATCA
Member of the European Parliament Sophie in ‘t Veld (ALDE/D66) has tabled written questions to the European Commission about FATCA.
@Badger, as an EU Citizen that sole voice lifts my heart yet I voted Leave because its a sole voice and had thought the EU would have been a vigorous defender of EU Citizens.
In the face of the usual US arrogance (thanks for the info in this post, Eric) it’s good to know that Sophie in’t Veld is still hard at work in defense of EU citizens being attacked by FATCA/CBT.
The International Roberry Service in full action !
A Swiss newspaper article describes how the US is becoming a more important tax haven. The article includes a scan of a thank you note written to a Geneva attorney by someone at a Nevada trust company who is benefitting from the hypocritical position of the US government. This is what it says:
July 23, 2016
I wanted to write to tell and note how much I appreciated your panel presentation in Amsterdam earlier this month. I understand the global frustration with the States surrounding how the FATCA and CRS situation has unfolded (and I admit it has helped my business considerably). We live in some interesting times!
My best regards,
Alliance Trust Company of Nevada
Here’s more on the US as a tax haven and the hypocrisy of it all:
“While traditional offshore centers have folded due to pressure from Fatca and the OECD, the battle to attract the untaxed dosh has started in earnest between various U.S. states.”
@George, I too would have thought that there would be more opposition from the EU pointing out the US hypocrisy. EU MEP in’t Veld has tried to make the EU transparent to EU citizens on the EU talks with the US re FATCA, and got some of the relevant documents released via FOI, but was stonewalled once, appealed, got more released
( http://sophieintveld.eu/commission-discloses-documents-on-us-tax-agreements-with-eu-member-states/ ) and is doggedly continuing her efforts – seemingly alone. The EU Greens have recently criticized the US as a tax haven. For those interested, here are some of the results I found re FATCA, searching on the EU Parliament website http://www.europarl.europa.eu/portal/en/search?q=fatca .
I try to keep an eye on this through sporadically checking MEP in’t Veld’s Twitter feed https://twitter.com/sophieintveld?lang=en etc.
I am hampered in my searching of sources outside N.America for the most part, because I am unilingual only (and too little French ability to do much without use of translation tools).
You are the best researcher par excellence, never mind feeling hindered by being unilingual. I am constantly impressed by all the articles you find which add to my education.
Wish you had been my study buddy in law school. And I bet you can type too.
Handelsblatt Exclusive: E.U. May Declare U.S. a Tax Haven
One major shortcoming of the article: mentions FATCA, but not lack of US reciprocity/failure to commit to CRS. OTOH there’s one new thing I hadn’t heard about before: Sven Giegold (MEP, German Green Party) expressing concern about the US allowing anonymous escrow accounts.
Wow. And what would tis entail? I doubt anybody would give America sanctions.