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Belgium lost over 221 billion euros to tax havens in 2016

Belgian companies transferred more than 221 billion euros to offshore tax havens in 2016, Le Soir, an evening newspaper, reported on Monday, citing Belgium’s Federal Public Service – Finance department’s statistics on declarations of payments to banks in these countries. Under Belgian tax laws, all companies are obliged to declare such transactions when they send over 100,000 euros per year to bank accounts or to persons resident in “blacklisted” states.

The tax havens include Monaco, the British Virgins Islands, Bermuda and the Cayman Islands, all of which are categorized by Belgium as States “with no or low taxation”, Le Soir explained.

Last year 853 Belgian companies reported transferring deposits to the countries on the blacklist. The amounts totaled 221.3 billion euros, giving an average of 260 million euros per company. That total almost equalled the 262 million euros Belgians registered in savings last year.

Bermuda was one of the top five favourite destinations of Belgian companies in 2016.

Singapore, Panama and Hong Kong are not on the blacklist, although they should be, given the current law, Le Soir pointed out. Luxemburg, for its part, was reincluded on the list of approved destinations in 2016.

The Brussels Times