ROBUST, TRUSTED, AND

PURPOSEFUL FINANCIAL CENTRE

A TRUSTED FINANCIAL CENTRE
ENHANCING EXCHANGE OF INFORMATION ON TAX

Singapore has significantly strengthened its channels for international cooperation to combat cross-border tax fraud and tax evasion. On 14 May 2013, MAS, MOF and Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore announced four measures to further enhance the Exchange of Information (EOI) framework:

  • Extension of EOI assistance on tax in accordance with the international EOI-on-request Standard;
  • Signing of the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters;
  • Removal of the court order requirement to obtain bank and trust information; and
  • Negotiation of a Model 1 Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act Intergovernmental Agreement with the US.

These changes followed a comprehensive review of the EOI framework in 2009 and represent another major step taken to enhance international tax cooperation. The Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes has affirmed that Singapore's EOI regime is in line with the international EOI-on-request Standard. In addition, Singapore criminalised serious tax offences as an ML predicate offence on 1 July 2013 and completed a critical review of high taxrisk accounts.

Singapore has been progressively and preemptively taking steps to enhance our regulatory regime to prepare financial institutions operating in Singapore for the more tax transparent global operating environment. The private banking industry in Singapore has also issued industry sound practices that set out clear guidelines to detect and deter movement of tax-illicit monies through Singapore.