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Tax Evasion clampdown?

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Beeroclock
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Postby Beeroclock » Thu, 08 May 2014 11:29 pm

jR8, I think we're on different wavelengths still. To be clear, my issue is not about the level of taxation, or left vs right politics, purely on the topic of tax avoidance specifically using tax havens, by which I'm not talking about countries like SG although it is sometimes listed as such. Also I'm not saying its illegal, just in my opinion unfair, and indeed greedy when practiced by individuals/companies who are already ultra rich.

For me there's no issue for SG to have relatively low taxes. And by living, working and paying my taxes here, as well as any taxes due in my home country, I am not avoiding tax or trying to, so I sleep quite easy on this. I have no assets or monies to "hide". Tax rates or financial disclosure policies do not really influence where I decide to reside or have citizenship, at least not as a primary or even secondary factor in this decision.

On the other hand, if I did use a BVI (or other tax haven) company to structure my affairs and shift/hide profits, cap gains etc, then I would sleep less easily nowadays, wondering if my advisers have done everything properly and kept up with all the regulatory changes, etc.

So I still struggle to grasp your arguments about duty free, communism etc. For me this issue is more analogous to NS, which has been discussed and debated at great length in this forum. And personally I would like to see the G8 govt's take a similar approach to tax avoiders (via tax havens) as the SG govt takes to NS avoiders, for reasons of fairness and upholding the intent/integrity of their tax and fiscal policy.

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Postby JR8 » Fri, 09 May 2014 10:53 am

http://www.ibtimes.com/tax-havens-map-f ... ap-1403162
'When investors began to realize that Switzerland was unlikely to remain a tax haven for much longer, many shifted their wealth to Singapore.'


I've not heard a connection being made between the policy of NS and tax-havens before. I'm going to have to ponder that one for a while! :)

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Postby Primrose Hill » Fri, 09 May 2014 11:29 am

Beeroclock wrote:jR8, I think we're on different wavelengths still. To be clear, my issue is not about the level of taxation, or left vs right politics, purely on the topic of tax avoidance specifically using tax havens, by which I'm not talking about countries like SG although it is sometimes listed as such. Also I'm not saying its illegal, just in my opinion unfair, and indeed greedy when practiced by individuals/companies who are already ultra rich.

For me there's no issue for SG to have relatively low taxes. And by living, working and paying my taxes here, as well as any taxes due in my home country, I am not avoiding tax or trying to, so I sleep quite easy on this. I have no assets or monies to "hide". Tax rates or financial disclosure policies do not really influence where I decide to reside or have citizenship, at least not as a primary or even secondary factor in this decision.

On the other hand, if I did use a BVI (or other tax haven) company to structure my affairs and shift/hide profits, cap gains etc, then I would sleep less easily nowadays, wondering if my advisers have done everything properly and kept up with all the regulatory changes, etc.

So I still struggle to grasp your arguments about duty free, communism etc. For me this issue is more analogous to NS, which has been discussed and debated at great length in this forum. And personally I would like to see the G8 govt's take a similar approach to tax avoiders (via tax havens) as the SG govt takes to NS avoiders, for reasons of fairness and upholding the intent/integrity of their tax and fiscal policy.

+1

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Postby Beeroclock » Fri, 09 May 2014 11:41 am

JR8 wrote:http://www.ibtimes.com/tax-havens-map-former-current-emerging-tax-shelter-countries-interactive-map-1403162
'When investors began to realize that Switzerland was unlikely to remain a tax haven for much longer, many shifted their wealth to Singapore.'


I've not heard a connection being made between the policy of NS and tax-havens before. I'm going to have to ponder that one for a while! :)
Hahaha, nothing too cryptic, really just saying if someone wants to go to all the effort to legally avoid NS (by renouncing PR/citizenship and following all the necessary steps notify MINDEF etc etc), then the Govt here will remember and there will be adverse consequences for that person (and maybe his family) on future employment/residence rights/etc... You can't have your cake and eat it. And the Govt wants to send a message that this policy is important and applies fairly to all people without exceptions.

NS is a fundamental obligation for male SC/PR's here. In the same way I see Taxation as a fundamental obligation for the citizens/residents of any country. It's the primary source for the Govt to fund all of the public infrastructure and services that the same citizens/residents will enjoy and benefit from. If individuals/companies make intentional efforts to avoid their tax obligation by building a portfolio in a tax haven and shifting/hiding income, then I reckon there should be consequences of this action too.

As has come to light, some of the schemes used by these MNC's are so ridiculous/audacious, I really don't know how they are even considered legal, but I guess if you have enough money you can find accountants and lawyers to defend nearly any position.

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Postby Beeroclock » Wed, 14 May 2014 3:09 pm

interesting article in the FT editorial of 13 May 2014 " The British furore over tax dodgers"

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Postby Beeroclock » Tue, 17 Jun 2014 10:40 am

Another interesting read in today's ST "tax avoidance is immoral and aids inequality" by Jacques Leslie

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Postby JR8 » Tue, 17 Jun 2014 11:31 am

Beeroclock wrote:Another interesting read in today's ST "tax avoidance is immoral and aids inequality" by Jacques Leslie



'Tax avoidance is legal*, and every man's right. Tax evasion is illegal'.

If the political class don't like it, they better change the laws then.



*think duty free shopping, etc.

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Postby Beeroclock » Tue, 17 Jun 2014 1:12 pm

JR8 wrote:
Beeroclock wrote:Another interesting read in today's ST "tax avoidance is immoral and aids inequality" by Jacques Leslie



'Tax avoidance is legal*, and every man's right. Tax evasion is illegal'.

If the political class don't like it, they better change the laws then.



*think duty free shopping, etc.

Yes it covers tax evasion too, conservatively estimating $7.6 trillion is illegally hidden in havens, 8% of global private wealth. And at least $200bn of lost tax revenue globally due to this illegal tax evasion.

Regarding tax avoidance, estimating it deprives the US of a third of it's corporate tax.

I find the numbers mind boggling.


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