Guatemala: Removal of Bank Secrecy Urged

The president of the central bank said that this would prevent Guatemala from being regarded internationally as a tax haven.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

This was explained by Edgar Barquín, president of the Bank of Guatemala (Banguat). He added that approval next year in the U.S. of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (Facta) will be incompatible with Guatemala where there is no law to release bank secrecy.

"The aim of this law is to make all Americans pay the taxes they owe even if they are operating in other jurisdictions, what they are trying to do is attack tax evasion," he said.

If banking secrecy is maintained "the Tax Authority or the Bank of Guatemala will not be able to sign agreements with other authorities because the law does not allow it," he added.

In addition the country would continue to be blacklisted by the OECD and could be classified as a tax haven, bringing negative economic and financial effects.



More on this topic

Bank Secrecy Act in Guatemala

November 2012

The government wants to make progress in meeting OECD requirements in order to bring the country out of the list of "gray" countries regarding tax information exchange.

An article in Prensalibre.com reports that Pavel Centeno, finance minister, said that "Guatemala has not advanced in the work to meet all the demands of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), since one of the points pending is the opening of bank secrecy for tax issues, it risks staying on the gray list of non transparent countries. "

Guatemala Amends Bank Secrecy Laws

June 2012

The aim is to provide the Tax Authority with access to taxpayers bank accounts in order to comply with parameters of the OECD.

Guatemalan ministers have agreed to changes to bill 4326 to amend the Tax Code and the Law on Banks and Financial Groups.

This initiative aims to facilitate access to information relating to taxpayers bank accounts by the Tax Authority (SAT).

Guatemala: Urgent Need to Eliminate Banking Secrecy

April 2011

The country could face economic sanctions if congress fails to approve new laws in its next two sessions.

Guatemalan banking regulator, Édgard Barquín, has reiterated several times to congress the urgency of approving the Banking Secrecy Law that will enable the country to come off the list of those that do not cooperate with fiscal transparency.

Bank Secrecy Could End in Guatemala

November 2009

The country's tax authority would be able to access taxpayer's banking accounts.

This modifications are being included in a law project proposed by the Banking Superintendence (SIB) and the Tax Authority (SAT).

"The proposed bill seeks to fight tax evasion and money laundering as well as getting Guatemala out of OECD's tax-haven 'gray-list'", explains Elperiodico.com.gt.

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