Income Tax Bill Amendments bring Singapore closer to “white list”Oct 22nd, 2009 | By Han Lee Yen | Category: Business Law
The Income Tax (Amendment) (Exchange of Information) Bill 2009 was passed by Parliament on 19 October 2009.
The latest amendment to the Income Tax Act will allow Singapore to implement the internationally-agreed Standard for the Exchange of Information for tax purposes upon request, which was endorsed by Singapore in March 2009.
According to Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam, the passing of the new amendment will help get Singapore off the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) ‘grey’ list by the end of the year.
‘This enhanced scope of cooperation will not only allow Singapore to provide greater assistance to its prescribed treaty partners, but also help Singapore obtain information for the enforcement of our domestic tax laws,’ Mr Shanmugaratnam told Parliament.
The OECD has three lists: black, grey and white, with countries categories according to their compliance to its standards, and Singapore is current on the “grey list”.
With the amendment of this bill and the signing of a protocol to its existing agreement for the avoidance of double taxation (DTA) with Bahrain on 14th October (the 11th out of a minimum of 12), Singapore will be able to meet the year-end deadline for getting herself removed from the “grey list” of Tax Havens.