Commitment Letter Commitment Letter Attachment Effective Exchange of Information Transparency

A. Establishing a Process for Effective Exchange of Information

1. Accordingly, the Government of the British Virgin Islands, in recognition of the OECD's modifications contained in the 2001 Report and in an effort to promote and foster international co-operation in tax matters, agrees to the effective exchange of information for criminal tax matters beginning in the first year after 31st December, 2003 and for civil tax matters in the first year after 31st December, 2005. These arrangements will relate to the provision of information upon request and will include protections against unauthorized disclosures and unauthorized use of information (taking into account the interest of public policy (ordre public), the need to protect trade, business, industrial, commercial and professional secrets, respect for attorney-client privilege and other restrictions on unauthorized disclosure). Information of the type referred to in paragraphs B. 1. and B. 3. shall not be treated as secret merely because it meets the criteria in those paragraphs. The process will entail the negotiation and adoption of bi-lateral tax information exchange agreements.

2. In a case involving information required for the investigation and prosecution of criminal tax matters, information will be provided without the requirement that the conduct being investigated or prosecuted must constitute a crime in the British Virgin Islands. However, such information may not be provided where the party requesting it cannot, under its own laws for purposes of enforcing its own tax laws, obtain such information.

3. In the case of information requested in the context of a civil tax matter, the absence of a British Virgin Islands tax interest in the matter or in obtaining the information will not be a bar to the provision of the information.