The Barbados International Business Association (BIBA) is mum on Barbados being named among ten governments added by the Council of the European Union, to the five already on its blacklist of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions.
When contacted this evening to give a comment on Barbados being included to the revised list, which also includes countries such as Aruba, Belize, and the United Arab Emirates, BIBA’s President Julia Hope told Barbados TODAY that the association would not be giving a comment at this time.
Efforts to reach Minister of International Business Ronald Toppin were unsuccessful.
However, a press statement from the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) stated that the Government was clueless about what it has been doing in relation to the international business sector.
The DLP said the recent blacklisting spells impending disaster for the country’s second highest foreign exchange earner and is just another example to Barbados that the Mia Mottley led administration does not know what it is doing.
The party is contending that Government has the largest cadre of financial advisors and economists supported by the public purse, and yet the country was no better off under them than with the previous administration they continue to vilify.
According to a statement from the Council, the jurisdictions named failed to implement commitments that they had made to the European Union by an agreed deadline.
The council also said it would continue to regularly review and update the list in the coming years to take into account evolving criteria and deadlines for jurisdictions to deliver on their commitments to improving tax governance.
“Today we completed our first comprehensive revision of the EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions. Since it was first adopted in late 2017, the list has proven its worth in promoting forward in a cooperative manner the EU’s agenda of improving global tax practices, fighting tax avoidance and improving good governance and transparency”, Eugen Teodorovici, the minister of finance of Romania said, in a published statement.
Meanwhile, the DLP said that in January 2018 under the former Democratic Labour Party (DLP) Government, Barbados was removed from the EU blacklist of 17 jurisdictions.
According to the statement under this current regime, Barbados failed to implement commitments made to the European Union by the agreed deadline despite the fact that they lowered corporation taxes for local businesses with the explanation that they were complying with European Union edicts.
The release also indicated that Minister of International Business and Industry, Ronald Toppin, even boasted in November last year that Barbados was on track for OECD compliance.
“Today big businesses are laughing all the way to the bank while Barbados has been blacklisted. The Government must justify to taxpayers the employment of Clyde Mascoll, Chief Economic Counsellor, Ronald Toppin, Minister of International Business and Industry; Marsha Caddle, Minister of Economic Affairs and Investment, plus Avinash Persuad another Economic and Finance advisor who heads a slew of non-ministerial finance and economic consultants to the Mottley administration,” the statement read.
The DLP also noted that the International Business Sector in this country employs some 6 000 persons and is the leading foreign exchange earner after tourism.
“This is not the time for highly-paid technocrats to be bluffing their way through governance of this country,” the release also read.