The Fiscal Review Committee (FRC) is adamant that the Minister for Finance will be able to announce in the next budget, Fiji’s removal from the European Union Tax blacklist.
In its recommendation to the Government, they called on the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Fiji Revenue and Customs Service to prioritise and to determine a resolution to Fiji’s listing as a non-cooperative jurisdiction.
In 2019, the European Union included Fiji on its list of ‘non-cooperative’ tax jurisdiction, and Fiji remains on that list with approximately 15 other countries.
The FRC said that the Government must ensure through clear communication with the relevant diplomatic parties (in Brussels) that clarification is sought and offered on the communication, necessary to satisfy the EU that the listing is no longer appropriate.
The Committee said that measures are required to ensure that Fiji is a signatory of the Global Forum and Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OCED) Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance and compliant with its requirements and those actions are taken immediately and the issue appears to have arisen, in part, out of poor communication.
The EU was particularly concerned about three specific tax incentives offered to investors which were assessed as harmful preferential tax regimes and the fact that Fiji had not joined the Global Forum and has not signed and ratified the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OCED) Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance which promotes tax transparency.