4 June 2015 – Australia, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, India, Indonesia and New Zealand became the latest countries to join the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement (MCAA), bringing the total number of jurisdictions to 61. The MCAA implements the Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Information in Tax Matters, developed by the OECD and G20 countries and presented in 2014.
The Standard provides for annual automatic exchange between governments of financial account information, including balances, interest, dividends and sales proceeds from financial assets. It covers accounts held by individuals and entities, including trusts and foundations.
To date, 94 jurisdictions have committed to implement the Standard, agreeing to launch the first automatic information exchanges in 2017 or 2018.
OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría welcomed the expansion of signatories of the MCAA. “We expect a truly significant amount of additional financial information to circulate among authorities in the coming years, resulting in less tax evasion, greater tax revenues and a fairer tax system for honest taxpayers”.
The MCAA is a framework administrative agreement used in conjunction with the Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters, which is the most comprehensive multilateral instrument available to countries for all forms of tax co-operation to tackle tax evasion and avoidance.