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Guernsey signs Fatca agreement
16 December 2013
Move to bring certainty to the island’s financial industry
Guernsey has signed an inter-government agreement with the
US Government for the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act
The act requires US taxpayers to report certain foreign
financial accounts and offshore assets in order to target tax
Guernsey's Chief Minister Peter Harwood said: "Guernsey has
been committed to exchanging tax information since it signed
its first Tax Information Exchange Agreement (TIEA) with the US
authorities in 2002. We have enhanced those arrangements, and
in doing so we have further enhanced our reputation and our
leadership position on tax transparency.
"This is a further step in the direction we have been
travelling for a decade or more. Fatca is shaping the new
global standards in information exchange and once again
Guernsey has shown its commitment to meeting those new global
standards decisively and at the earliest possible juncture.
"This is an important agreement for our finance sector. It
gives them the long-term sustainability and stability that they
have asked for clearly and consistently."
The agreement will bring certainty to the island's financial
industry, said Michael Betley, executive group chairman of
He said Fatca has been "enormously distracting and costly"
for the industry, but added: "It is a relief that we have
finally signed the US inter-governmental agreement, after many
months of waiting. It has been a hard slog but at least we can
now plan with a greater degree of certainty.
"At least it is non-discriminatory in the sense that it affects
all businesses worldwide [that] undertake financial
transactions with the US or act for US persons."
"Guernsey has accepted that as an island we wish to be part of
a more compliant and transparent worldwide financial system and
like it or not Fatca is part of that. We will not be able to
pause for breath for too long as it is likely that similar
multilateral initiatives will be following shortly," he
The Fatca agreement was concluded 48 hours after Guernsey's
parliament gave its unanimous approval and committed Guernsey
to meet the highest standards of tax transparency. Jersey and
the Isle of Man also signed similar agreements with the US
At the same time, the island's parliament also agreed to
request the extension to Guernsey of the OECD Multilateral
Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax