Tax Integrity & Offshore Financial Centres

Introduction

Tax evasion is a crime and considered one of the more egregious ‘predicate offences’ for money laundering. But what about tax avoidance and tax planning? Is there a difference between the three, and if so, how can you tell?

Offshore Financial Centers (OFC), sometimes referred to as ”tax havens”, offer special financial facilities and services to corporations and wealthy private individuals. These services can serve perfectly legitimate purposes, but certain aspects of OFCs also make them very attractive for tax cheats to hide their wealth.

Complex offshore structures facilitate hiding beneficial ownership of corporations and make it very difficult for banks to establish and monitor their KYC requirements. What are the key risks of these structures and would you recognise tax evasion Red Flags?

Target Audience

Wholesale Clients Banks, Wealth Managers, M&A and Corporate Finance specialists, Fund Managers, Trust & Company Services Providers, Lawyers, Accountants, Regulatory Supervisors, Financial investigators and their Customer facing/Customer Support staff, Risk Management analysts and AML Compliance staff

Objectives

At the end of the training, participants will have enhanced their awareness of AML/CFT issues related to Offshore Financial Centres and be able to:

  • Describe the role of OFCs in international tax optimization schemes;
  • Explain the difference between tax avoidance and tax evasion and debate the ethical dimension of tax optimization structures;
  • Explain which type of offshore jurisdictions are best avoided;
  • Assess the tax integrity risk profile of offshore jurisdictions;
  • Identify specific OFC related AML Red Flags;
  • Advise clients regarding risks with respect to cross-border financial crime.

Topics

The following topics are addressed in this course:

  • Key OFC features;
  • Why OFCs may be vulnerable for abuse by tax cheats to hide money;
  • UBO complexities associated with OFCs;
  • OFC Typologies and tax integrity red flags.

This e-learning will take approximately 45-60 minutes to complete and includes a knowledge check.

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