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UAE Free Zone Commits To Tax Transparency Standards

by Lorys Charalambous, Lowtax.net, Cyprus
16 April, 2015

The United Arab Emirates's (UAE's) Ministry of Finance recently signed a memorandum of understanding on tax information exchange with Umm Al Quwain (UAQ) Free Trade Zone Authority.

The agreement was signed to adopt the framework developed by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development's (OECD) on tax transparency and information exchange.

Under the terms of the MoU, the UAQ FTZ will share with the Finance Ministry information on the ownership and identity of entities, and share accounting records and the banking details of companies and individuals registered at the free zone.

The MoU also allows companies and individuals registered at UAQ FTZ to avail themselves of the benefits of the various double taxation avoidance treaties entered into by the UAE.

Majid Ali Omran, Director of the International Financial Relations Department at the Ministry of Finance, noted that the UAE has completed its OECD Phase 1 review on tax transparency and information exchange and is now undergoing a Phase 2 review, which looks at how effectively the UAE exchanges information in tax matters in practice.

Johnson George, the General Manager of the UAQ FTZ Authority, pointed out that "setting up entities at UAQ FTZ allows 100 percent foreign ownership, full repatriation of capital and profits, and full tax exemption [for] investors."

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