TAX HAVENS -THE GOOD,THE BAD & THE UGLY
Exotic islands, sandy beaches … and little or no tax – what’s not to love about tax havens? Well, in some cases, quite a lot, according to a piece in the Irish Business Traveller magazine section of The Sunday Business Post.
The ‘Good’ include the Cayman Islands and Switzerland.
The Caymans are “not only the quintessential tax haven, they are also a Caribbean getaway of great appeal,” writes Mark Collins. “Apart from being exposed to hurricanes in autumn, the Cayman Islands enjoy a temperate climate … and while it’s a place where the rich salt away their money, it’s not necessarily a rich man’s destination.”
The author suggests a trip there to scope it out and advises that budget accommodation is available.
“Think sun, sea and tax efficiency,” he opines.
Collins also lauds the ‘unique’ geography of Switzerland (as well as the tax regime, of course).
“Switzerland is refreshingly odd. Loll about on a pedal-boat on Lake Geneva. Take a train ride through the mountains. It’s a cross between high finance and Heidi, fondues and future derivatives.”
The ‘Bad’ is Monaco.
“If you’re 107 years old, a billionaire, and you fear your 16 year old wife may be trying to hasten your demise, Monaco’s the place for you. Along the footpaths you’ll find defibrillators in case you keel over with a heart attack, while you’ll sleep better at night knowing there are more police-per-person here than any other country in the world.”
Collins says there are few places on the Mediterranean so tacky as to make Puerto Banus look soulful.
“If you find yourself here … get the hell out,” he advises.
The ‘Ugly’ is, of course, our very own IFSC.
“You are surrounded by empty apartment blocks, while the unfinished headquarters of Anglo Irish Bank has become a refuge for stray cats and rats. When your boss back in Berlin told you that you were being relocated to a tax haven, you thought sandy beaches, yachts moored in the distance.”
Just shows how wrong a person can be!