My article in The Guardian today. It starts like this:
“The world is seeing the first stirrings of an emerging new architecture of global transparency in taxation which could, if pushed forwards, help governments for the first time raise serious revenues from the estimated $21-32 trillion sitting offshore. Switzerland, in alliance with the tax havens of Luxembourg, Austria and Britain, is leading the charge to derail it.”
The headline isn’t mine: it isn’t ‘a scheme’ but several, and I wish it had said “tap” or some other short word instead of “net” (though who knows? Perhaps over the long term, trillions may have accumulate). There is also a slight error which is mine: I wish I’d inserted the two words in bold into this sentence:
The Swiss Bankers’ Association, which designed Rubik, has explicitly admitted that its original purpose was “to prevent” automatic information exchange: in other words, to kill progress on the European Savings Tax Directive. (the Directive is already up and running: Rubik’s aim is to kill the amendments to plug its loopholes.)
But overall, I’m very happy.
PS some commenters under the article are outraged that I live in . . . . Switzerland. Yes I do: in Zurich. And the reasons are here. (I’m not sure why it’s a problem for me to be living here rather than, say, the tax haven of the UK. I reckon I pay a similar whack in taxes here as I would in the UK, though I’ve never done a detailed analysis.) I always feel that if you’re going to write about something, then it helps to be where the action is.