India’s finance minister has called on the G20 countries to bring crypto within the “Automatic Exchange of Information” framework. More than 100 countries have adopted the Common Reporting Standard under the framework.
India’s finance minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, talked about cryptocurrency Friday during the G20 Ministerial Symposium on Tax and Development in Bali, Indonesia.
Noting that “tax transparency” is an area where “considerable progress has been made with the Automatic Exchange of Information in respect of financial accounts,” she described: “Our investigations have shown that numerous layers of entities are often set up by tax evaders to conceal their unaccounted assets.”
Sitharaman added that although “the Automatic Exchange of Information framework provides for financial account information to various jurisdictions, tax evaders, being smart, explore other avenues to shift their unaccounted wealth through investment in non-financial assets.” Emphasizing that this area is a point of action for the G20, the finance minister detailed:
While the development of the crypto asset reporting framework is underway, I call upon the G20 to examine the feasibility of an Automatic Exchange of Information in respect of other non-financial assets beyond those covered under the CRS like immovable properties as well.
The Automatic Exchange of Information (AEOI) aims to reduce global tax evasion. The Common Reporting Standard (CRS) is an information standard for the AEOI. It was developed in response to a G20 request and approved by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Council in July 2014.
The CRS calls on jurisdictions to obtain information from their financial institutions and automatically exchange that information with other jurisdictions on an annual basis, the OECD described.
The Indian finance minister continued: “Over 100 countries have committed to exchanging financial account information under the Common Reporting Standards.”
However, she pointed out that some jurisdictions have yet to commence exchanges of information under this framework. They “will have to be brought in … Therein lies one work agenda for G20,” Sitharaman stressed. She opined:
I would think it is for the G20 to play the role of a catalyst in encouraging these jurisdictions to become part of the Automatic Exchange of Information and this mechanism because it can strengthen global efforts against offshore tax evasion and avoidance.
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