Sharing information on black money with India: Mauritius

Posted By: Pti
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New Delhi, Feb 21 (PTI) Mauritius has provided Indianauthorities with banking information and other financialdetails on more than 90 cases of suspected tax evasion andfinancial malpractice over the past three years.

Asserting that it has put in place robust measures tohelp India track black money, the Mauritian Finance Ministrytold PTI that the information sought by Indian authorities hasbeen duly provided as per international norms.

While acknowledging that some unscrupulous persons mightstill beat the systems in place to check flows of black money,the Mauritian Finance Ministry said it has taken additionalmeasures with respect to India.

"... With India, we have developed a mechanism to be inclose consultation with the Indian authorities to deal withany issues that may arise. This includes the posting of anofficer from the Central Board of Direct Taxes at the IndianHigh Commission in Mauritius," the ministry said.

Mauritius has often been suspected to be a facilitator ofblack money round-tripping or routing illicit wealth stashedabroad by Indians back into the country through their bankingand financial institutions.

In a detailed reply to queries on the black money issue,Mauritius'' Ministry of Finance and Economic Development saidthe tax treaty between the two countries provides for sharingof banking information.

"Over the last three years, we have received around 64requests for bank information from India. The requestedinformation was duly submitted to India," the ministry said.

In addition, the Mauritius Financial Services Commissionhas received 17 requests for information from India''s marketregulator, Sebi, since September, 2009.

Detailing the requests from India on the black moneyissue, the ministry further said: "Since late 2007 to date,the FIU-India has made 10 requests for information from theMauritius FIU."

FIU-India (Financial Intelligence Unit of India) is thenodal agency responsible for receiving, processing, analysingand disseminating information relating to suspect financialtransactions to enforcement agencies and foreign FIUs.

The Mauritius FIU has also made 15 information requestsfrom its Indian counterpart.

"Mauritius'' laws provide the competent authority withbroad access powers to information relevant for exchangepurposes, including access to bank information," the ministrysaid.

"Furthermore, it can obtain the required information fromany person who is in possession or control of suchinformation," it added. .

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