European Union to take UAE off tax haven blacklist
The change of mind comes just a few weeks after the EU announced an original blacklist of 17 non-EU countries.- Alamy Image
Brussels - Panama, Tunisia, Mongolia, Macau, Grenada and Barbados will also be removed from the list.
Published: Wed 17 Jan 2018, 9:54 PM
The EU will remove the UAE, South Korea and six other countries from its recently unveiled tax haven blacklist in a quick reversal that drew criticism from activists.
An EU official said that the bloc's finance ministers would pare down the list at talks next week, satisfied that the countries had made commitments to tax reform that Brussels will monitor.
"Barring a major surprise, EU finance ministers should remove eight countries from the blacklist of tax havens," the official said on condition of anonymity.
The change of mind comes just a few weeks after the EU announced an original blacklist of 17 non-EU countries, which drew furious reaction from several of those targeted.
Panama, Tunisia, Mongolia, Macau, Grenada and Barbados will also be removed from the list.
The official said the countries removed from the list now move to the EU's so-called "grey list", jurisdictions that have made unspecified commitments to the EU on reforming their tax laws.
"I confirm that a dozen blacklisted third countries have since December sent additional commitments," EU Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre
Moscovici told reporters in Paris.
"It's a good sign, since the purpose of a list is to get out and to get off of it you have to solve the problems that are identified," Moscovici added.
The lists came a year on from the leak of the "Panama Papers" - a massive amount of data from a prominent Panamanian law firm showing how the world's wealthy stash assets.
The EU originally screened a total of 92 countries to draw up the list, which is expected to be continuously updated.