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Government to consult with private sector on FATCA

Minister of Financial Services Ryan Pinder has said that the government will take into account the views of the private sector when deciding how best to share information with the US Treasury in light of the new Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act. 

Source:
Date:
Updated:
TheBahamasInvestor.com
Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Ministry of Financial Services is set to consult with the private sector on how best to meet the requirements of the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which will become law next year and forces foreign financial institutions (FFIs) to disclose information on their US accounts to the US Treasury.


Countries seeking to comply with FATCA can sign an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) with the US that determines the specifics of how they will release information. A model I IGA allows for the country’s government to report to the US, whereas under model II, FFIs must report directly to the US themselves.

Speaking at a symposium hosted by the Bahamas Financial Services Board (BFSB) yesterday, Minister for Financial Services Ryan Pinder said the Bahamian government would take into account the views of the private sector when determining which model to follow.

“One thing I can assure you of is that the decision will be based on thorough analysis and consulation with the private sector,” he said.

The Minister also said that the government was prepared to help guide businesses, as they navigate the maze of legislation.

He noted that some businesses in the country did not have the benefit of international parent companies and might therefore struggle to develop their own FATCA compliant policies, saying: “I am appreciative of how different institutions are preparing for FATCA. [Some have] directives and programmes in place by parent organizations, [while some do] not have the luxury of global infrastructure.”

“We will work with the vulnerable areas of the industry to assist with the strategy for implementation,” he said. “We have the talent in the industry to do the right thing and to not only face this issue, but also to solve it.”

cmorris@dupuch.com

Vessels from all over The Bahamas are being decorated and strewn with lights ahead of the annual Festival of Lights this weekend. Watch a video about the event here.

The Paradise Island bridge was renamed in honour of Sir Sidney Poitier last weekend. Watch a video of the celebrations here.

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