OTTAWA - Gail Shea, Minister of National Revenue and Minister for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency delivered the following statement with regards to information on Canadians with offshore assets that has allegedly been in the possession of several media outlets:
"Canada has been working tirelessly with its international partners ever since reports surfaced that certain media outlets were in possession of large amounts of data related to potential cases of tax evasion or aggressive tax avoidance. We continue to work to obtain the information from other sources."
"Today, the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom announced they are in possession of tax-related information involving numerous trusts and companies holding assets on behalf of residents in jurisdictions around the world."
"I have reached out to the Government of the United Kingdom and secured a commitment that information relevant to Canada stemming from this data will be shared. My officials have also made formal requests to the American and Australian tax administrations for the information in their possession. I would like to thank HM Revenue and Customs, the US Internal Revenue Service and the Australian Taxation Office for their close collaboration."
This is good news for hard-working, law-abiding Canadians who pay their fair share and very bad news for tax evaders in this country - and indeed around the world."
"This underscores the close working relationship that Canada has developed with its international partners. Since 2006, our Government has worked to grow our network of information sharing agreements. Canada now has over 90 tax treaties and 16 tax information exchange agreements that allow for tax information to be shared. This makes it increasingly possible for Canada to access information from jurisdictions around the world."
"International cooperation, along with implementation of key enforcement measures, such as those proposed in Economic Action Plan 2013, are essential to combatting international tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance. Canada is determined to maintain these fruitful partnerships and to continue to be a world leader in the fight against international tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance."