Morocco leaves EU tax haven grey list

Morocco has been removed from the EU’s tax haven grey list after it took a series of measures and enacted new laws aiming to ensure greater transparency.

The most recent reforms undertaken by Morocco to comply to EU fiscal standards was that of the tax system pertaining to financial hub, Casablanca Finance City.

Morocco has also reformed in line with EU standards two preferential tax regimes relating to free zones and export companies.

 

Morocco’s 2020 budget provided for a series of measures to fight tax fraud and evasion and encourage the repatriation of assets held abroad.

The grey list, also called the “watch list,” includes countries whose commitments in terms of tax compliance are considered insufficient by the European Union, but their implementation is closely monitored.

First launched in 2017, the EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes is part of the EU’s external tax strategy and aims to contribute to ongoing efforts to promote good tax governance in the world.

The grey list includes countries that have committed to amend or abolish their harmful tax systems, while the black list includes countries with tax systems that attract companies and wealthy individuals seeking to pay low tax percentages or evade taxes outright.

The tax haven black list includes American Samoa, Anguilla, Barbados, Fiji, Guam, Palau, Panama, Seychelles, Trinidad and Tobago, Vanuatu and the US Virgin Islands. The Cayman Islands and the Sultanate of Oman have succeeded to quit the black list.

 

The EU establishes its lists taking into account several criteria, including tax transparency, tax justice, and real economic activity. Every country that does not meet these criteria must address its deficiencies by a specific date.

Blacklisted countries face difficulties accessing EU funding programs, while European companies doing business in those jurisdictions have to take additional compliance measures

 

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