3rd February, 2017 — The Embassy of the Hellenic Republic (Greece) recently informed the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis that it has removed St. Kitts and Nevis from its national list of non-cooperative states, as there is no institutional framework on administrative assistance between the two countries.
In 2015, the European Commission published a Press Release with a list of international tax havens and its Action Plan for Fair and Efficient Corporate Taxation in the European Union. St. Kitts and Nevis was included on the national list of ten (10) countries as being non-cooperative even though in August of the previous year, the Federation had completed two reviews by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation Development (OECD) Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes and rated as being “largely compliant”.
The publication of the list of non-cooperative countries sparked a public outcry from several countries across the region that were similarly aligned and several démarches were made to the Delegation of the European Union protesting the unfounded nature of the action. St. Kitts and Nevis lobbied intensely on its own behalf both locally and abroad, utilizing as many diplomatic fora as possible.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Hon. Mark Brantley availed himself of opportunities during conferences overseas to engage the representatives of the respective countries, requesting the criteria for including St Kitts and Nevis on the list and our removal. It was in the margins of the EU-CELAC Summit held in the Dominican Republic in October 2016 when he had the opportunity to meet face to face with the Greek representative. Later in the year when the newly accredited Ambassador visited the Federation, the matter was again raised.
The Ministry deems the recent decision by Greece to remove St Kitts and Nevis from its list as a success of these combined efforts. Of the initial ten (10) countries, St. Kitts and Nevis has now been removed from the lists of Estonia, Italy and Greece.