The Global Forum published today a new peer review report on transparency and exchange of information on request (EOIR) for Kenya, and three first-time reviews for Côte d’Ivoire, Moldova and Tanzania. Travel restrictions owing to the COVID-19 pandemic having prevented assessors from performing on-site visits to evaluate the practical implementation of the international EOIR standard, the reports only cover the first phase of the assessment, analysing the jurisdictions’ legal and regulatory frameworks against the EOIR standard. Ratings for each element and overall ratings will be attributed at a later stage, once on-site visits are carried out and full reviews have been completed.
Key findings and recommendations include:
Côte d’Ivoire’s legal framework is generally in line with the EOIR standard thanks to recent changes. However, the report notes country’s network of international agreements is limited and strongly encourages it to expand its existing treaty network to all relevant interested partners and ensure that all its mechanisms of exchange of information are fully in line with the standard. Côte d’Ivoire should also address the deficiencies identified regarding the availability of information on the owners of bearer shares and on beneficial owners of partnerships and co-operative companies. Read the report [version française]
Kenya’s legal and regulatory framework for ensuring the availability, access and exchange of all relevant information for tax purposes is generally in accordance with the standard. Since its previous peer review in 2016, Kenya has enhanced its international network of exchange of information relationships with the entry into force of the multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters in 2020. It has also introduced a centralised register for legal and beneficial ownership of companies. There remains, however, scope for improvement in clarifying the range of beneficial owners to be identified for companies, and for ensuring that beneficial ownership information for trusts and partnerships is available in all cases. Read the report
Moldova’s legal and regulatory framework generally ensures the availability, access and exchange of relevant information for tax purposes. Key recommendations refer to the alignment of the definition of beneficial owners in the existing law with the international standard, particularly in relation to partnerships and fiducia. Improvements are also required on the availability of accounting information of fiducia (and foreign trusts with resident trustees or administered in Moldova). Read the report
Tanzania has taken important steps to comply with the EOIR standard. While most of the recent legal changes go in the right direction, especially on the availability of beneficial ownership information, improvements are still needed. The report points out that the changes pertain to Tanzania’s mainland only, and recommends similar steps in respect to Zanzibar. The availability of accounting records for entities that cease to exist in line with the retention requirements under the standard also needs attention. Further, the report notes the limitations of the country’s network of international agreements and strongly encourages Tanzania to enter into exchange relationships with all relevant partners. Read the report