New political agreement against international tax evasion

26 May 2017

Anders Kiærskou, Manager, Tax |

All political parties represented in the Danish parliament stand behind a new agreement that seeks to strengthen the efforts against international tax evasion.

According to the agreement, a new centre is to be established that shall bring together and focus efforts on international tax evasion. Other main elements of the agreement are further resources for tax control related to tax havens, increased transparency concerning tax advice and a continued offensive effort from the Danish authorities.

According to the Minister of Taxation, it damages the common sense of ordinary Danish tax payers when they see fraudsters sneak money across national borders to flee from the searchlight of the tax authorities. Everything must be done to stop this. Former governments have already created a good foundation in this area, according to the minister, who is pleased that this foundation can be built upon and the efforts further strengthened.

The new centre for combating international tax evasion shall bring together efforts, such as making it easier to coordinate information and data and thus identify new fraud patterns. At the same time, the centre will serve as a collective entrance and exit for exchange of information internationally.

With the new political agreement, it has been decided to allocate 25 million DKK annually up to and including 2021. The funds stem from the resources already allocated to the subject.

The parties also agree to focus on tax advisors’ responsibility when advising on business models using tax havens abroad. Therefore, the possibility of introducing an obligation to disclose information in order to increase the risk of discovery through a greater degree of transparency should be considered.

At an international level, more extensive agreements have been concluded in recent years, for example regarding exchange of information across countries. Within the next year, more agreements are under way within the framework of the EU and the OECD.

With the agreement, Denmark will continue to play an offensive role and to maintain its current momentum in international cooperation, according to the minister.

It will be interesting to observe whether the endeavour – admirable as it is – will manage to live up to the expectations of the minister.

The above article is taken from tax:watch, our electronic English newsletter on Danish Tax and VAT matters. tax:watch is issued on the last Friday of each month and is free of charge. Please sign up here.