A new article by Christopher Sambrano of Nation News in Barbados entitled Barbados ready to ensure FATCA compliance appears at first glance to be just one more depressingly familiar report about yet another country preparing to roll-over for the IRS, but this one adds an intriguing twist at the end:
“Barbados has a strong history of compliance, and with the heavy presence and influence of the Canadian banks and strong trade ties and treaties with Canada, our banking system should be compliant.
These international institutions will certainly ensure their banking network becomes compliant as most of these banks likely already have robust programs in place to ensure FATCA compliance and ultimately the continued stability and security of this vital sector.”
Remarkable conjecture about the FATCA-readiness of Canadian banks aside, let’s consider for a moment the possible reaction in Barbados if Canada were to reject FATCA. As James Jatras has already argued in his recent FATCA Forum presentation, “If Canada were to say no, a lot of other countries would look at it and say, ‘Well, if the Yanks can’t even get them on board, that means this is not going to fly.’ So, that’s why it is so crucial what happens up here.”
Canada has a longstanding and close relationship with Barbados, especially in the banking sector where Canadian banks comprise 78% of the island’s 50 registered international banks. Our response to FATCA will thus most certainly be very closely watched in Bridgetown. This is a perfect example of how Canadians could make a real difference in the global fight against FATCA tyranny.