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Saint Lucia: EU ‘Golden Passport’ Blacklist? Caribbean Diplomat says: Not So Fast!

The Antigua and Barbuda’s Ambassador to the United States, Sir Ronald Sanders is warning Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries to be prepared to be blacklisted by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) over their citizenship by investment (CBI) and resident by investment (RBI) schemes.

Sir Sanders, who is also his country’s top diplomat at the Organisation of American states (OAS), says initial reports this week suggesting that the OECD had blacklisted eight CARICOM countries over the schemes, were wrong.

“The OECD has not ‘blacklisted’ these countries – at least not yet. But the stage has been set for punitive action, unless there is a proactive and unified response by all these countries,” he said in a commentary released on the website of the sub-regional Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) of which Antigua and Barbuda is a member.

“Essentially what the OECD said in its latest resistance to any form of tax competition is: CBI/RBI schemes can be misused to evade tax legitimately due to their countries of tax residence by the beneficiaries of these schemes.”

The Bahamas, Barbados and St. Lucia have already spoken out against the OECD position.

The OECD said Tuesday that the Residence and citizenship by investment (CBI/RBI) schemes, often referred to as golden passports or visas, “can create the potential for misuse as tools to hide assets held abroad from reporting under the OECD/G20 Common Reporting Standard (CRS).

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