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Judging from these factors the offshore centers located in the Western Hemisphere have

argued that the muted response by the OECD with respect to Switzerland and

Luxembourg and to a lesser degree Ireland is untenable.

Luxembourg in its statement on the report at the Council of Ministers stated118

:

“Luxembourg does not share the Report’s implicit belief that bank secrecy is

necessarily 119a source of harmful tax competition. It cannot accept that an

exchange of information that is circumscribed by the respect of international laws

and respective national laws be considered a criterion to identify a harmful tax

regime and a tax haven. The report gives the impression that its purpose is not so

much to counter harmful tax competition where it exists as to abolish bank

secrecy.”

Luxembourg concluded that in view of this it cannot be bound by the

recommendations or the report as there are fundamental flaws in its view

particularly as it relates to the offering of private financial services to corporate

and personal clientele with bank secrecy as a key component120

.

In a similar statement condemning the Report’s ostensible abolition of bank secrecy

Switzerland has stated:121

118 OECD Report Harmful Tax Competition An Emerging Global Issue Annex II Statements by Luxembourg and Switzerland page 73 Id at page 74 Id at page 75 Id at page 76 119 120 121

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