France to tighten rules on dealing with tax havens

By Reuters Staff
October 7, 2009

PARIS, Oct 7 (Reuters) – The French government plans to strengthen its fiscal rules towards countries on the OECD’s tax “grey list” that have not signed bilateral agreements with France, Prime Minister Francois Fillon said on Wednesday.

The Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) published in April a so-called “grey list” of jurisdictions they said fell short of full compliance with internationally agreed tax standards.

Fillon said the government would introduce new steps to tighten the rules by the end of the year.

“It will penalise financial flows with non-cooperative tax havens, increase tax rates on flows arriving and leaving from these havens and strengthen anti-abuse measures,” Fillon said in a speech to parliament.

France has increased pressure on tax havens to comply withh international rules.

Last week French banks promised to close all their branches and outlets in jurisdictions considered to be tax havens from March 2010 onwards.
(Reporting by Anna Willard, editing by Mike Peacock) ((Reuters Messaging: anna.willard.reuters.com@reuters.net; +33 1 49 49 5339; anna.willard@reuters.com))

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