Spain wants to blacklist tax haven Gibraltar

Spain claims that the British colony of Gibraltar must be blacklisted as a tax haven. Sapin also claims Gibraltar shelters corrupt businesses.

In the end of March, Spanish authorities asked the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to blacklist it i.e. to place it in the list of uncooperative territories because it fails to help investigate financial corruption. According to the Spanish Treasury Department, Gibraltar had not been forthcoming to help to clamp down on Spanish money launderers and tax evaders.

However, Peter Caruana, the Chief Minister of Gibraltar, disagrees with the claims of his government. The latest complaint is just one from a series of attacks by the Spanish government against Gibraltar and it is peculiar that it comes weeks after the authorities of the UK and Gibraltar were criticised by Spain for not securing a stricken ship in disputed waters off the peninsula. As a result, the vessel broke up and caused an oil spill on Spanish beaches.

To remind, Gibraltar was seized by the British in 1704. Spain has retained a constitutional claim and calls for its return. This issue has long been the hard point in the relations between Spain and Britain. In 2002, there was a referendum, and 99% of Gibraltarians voted to remain a British colony. In 2006, a historic agreement was signed by the UK, Spain and Gibraltar in order to solve the decades-long problems.

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