New Zealand is a Tax Haven. Sign to tell the Minister to close our foreign trust law loopholes

The Shewan Review into New Zealand’s trust laws has been released. The review was a part of the Government’s response to the Panama Papers, which showed that New Zealand is a tax haven. The review states what we’ve known all along; ”the existing foreign trust disclosure rules are inadequate.” [1]

The review recommends that all information on a trust, including the trust's settlors, protector, non-resident trustees, and beneficiaries should disclose their name, email address, foreign address, country of tax residence, and tax numbers at the time of registration. [2] The report recommends that this information is either in a searchable but not public database or made publicly available. If we want to rid New Zealand of our tax haven label, the Government must adopt these recommendations.

So far the Minister of Revenue, Michael Woodhouse, has said the Government are open to enacting these recommendations but won’t make a decision for a month - this is our moment to act. If we want to ensure the Government adopts all the recommendations, including a publicly searchable database of these trusts, then we need to match our response to when the Panama Papers were released, that pushed the Government into having to announce the review in the first place.

Add your name to our petition to close the loopholes that allow the world's rich to escape paying their fair share in tax by using foreign trusts in New Zealand. We do not want New Zealand to be a tax haven for the world’s wealthiest 1%.

By reading the review, our movement’s impact is noticeable. They equate the significant debate in the local media, on page 77, over whether New Zealand is a tax haven by pointing to the polling that we crowdfunded which showed a majority of Kiwis are 'concerned' about New Zealand's new reputation as a tax haven. [3]

Our action is making a difference, but we need to drive the nail in the coffin of New Zealand being a used as a tax haven by ensuring all information on a trust, including importantly the trust’s beneficiaries name, email address, foreign address, are available in a publicly searchable database.

So add your name telling the Minister to adopt the recommendations made in Shewan Review to close the loopholes that allow the world's rich to escape paying their fair share in tax by using foreign trusts in New Zealand.

We can only make this win possible if we rally like we did when the Panama Papers were released showing New Zealand is a Tax Haven by pushing the Minister of Revenue, Michael Woodhouse, to adopt the recommendations of the Shewan Review. The Government shouldn’t have needed this amount of public outcry or an inquiry to see that our trust system is broken, but we can restore the public's confidence and rid New Zealand of being a tax haven by forcing the Government to act quickly to adopt the recommendations made in the Shewan Review.

References

  1. Review: 'Existing foreign trust disclosure rules inadequate', NZ Herald, Jun 27, 2016

  2. Government Inquiry into Foreign Trust Disclosure Rules, June 2016, John Shewan

  3. Panama Papers: Majority of Kiwis 'concerned' about New Zealand's new reputation, NZ Herald, Wednesday Apr 27, 2016

Dear Prime Minister, John Key, and Minister of Revenue, Michael Woodhouse,

Close the loopholes that allow the world's rich to escape paying their fair share in tax by using foreign trusts in New Zealand. We do not want New Zealand to be a tax haven for the world’s wealthiest 1%.

9,471 SIGNATURES
10,000 signatures

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