Malta is not one of the counties included in the EU tax havens list published by Brussels on Tuesday, December 5th.
The EU said those blacklisted had refused to cooperate and change their way after almost one year of consultations. These countries included: American Samoa, Bahrain, Barbados, Grenada, Guam, South Korea, Macau, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Namibia, Palau, Panama, St. Lucia, Samoa, Trinidad & Tobago, Tunisia and United Arab Emirates. The EU's penalties on the blacklisted countries still need to be confirmed.
The issue of tax havens resurfaced earlier this year when media reports based on leaked documents, dubbed the Paradise Papers, showed how the rich and famous stash their wealth in shell companies in small nations to avoid paying taxes at home. Higher-tax countries like France have pushed for the blacklist as well as a crackdown on tax havens in the EU as well. Lower-tax countries like Ireland and the Netherlands argue that this will hurt Europe's competitiveness.
The Socialist S&D group said that the blacklist could have been much more inclusive, even including EU countries. Others, too, were asking why countries like Luxembourg, Malta and Britain – whose crown dependency Isle of Man featured prominently in the Paradise Papers – were not included.
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