18 December 2017

Namibia Waits for EU to Discuss Delisting

FINANCE minister Calle Schlettwein last week said government had not received any formal invitation from the European Union to start a dialogue for delisting Namibia as a tax haven.

Namibia was listed among the likes of Panama, South Korea, Macau and Barbados as an attempt by the EU to name and shame tax havens.

The idea of the list came after the release of the Panama and Paradise Papers that revealed how millions that could go towards development are hidden in tax havens.

Last week, EU ambassador to Namibia, Jana Hybaskova addressed the blacklisting of the country, saying it was wrongly reported on by the media.

She also said that despite this blacklisting, she could only confirm that the country as a sovereign state has been invited "to enter the dialogue to be delisted from the list of countries with non-cooperating jurisdictions."

Schlettwein yesterday said despite Hybaskova's words, "No, We have received no written invitation after being listed."

The minister had last week strongly denounced the blacklisting, branding it as unfair and discriminatory, while calling on the EU to correct the issue, which has since damaged the country's reputation.

He said the country could not be blacklisted just because it had not submitted the agreements on time, which he said was due to a communication where they were given two dates for submission.

Schlettwein said they were able to submit these agreements the previous Friday 12 December 2017.

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