Cone Marshall’s Principal, Geoffrey Cone Responds to the Feature; New Zealand – a Model of Tax Transparency

Cone Marshall is an international tax and trust law firm located in Auckland, New Zealand. The company was established in 1999, and its current principals are Karen Marshall and Geoffrey Cone. Cone Marshall works in collaboration with international families and their advisors to assist them create trusts, companies, partnerships, and provide global wealth as well as tax planning advice.

In the year 2012, an article was posted on several social networks including Facebook, Google+, Twitter as well as LinkedIn entitled: New Zealand – A model of Tax Transparency. Mr. Cone disagrees with the notion, and he pointed out that New Zealand is not a tax haven with the secretive private banking industry. He added that New Zealand is a charter member that subscribes to the principles attached to the gold standards of transparency.

There was a notable increase in the number of foreign trusts in New Zealand, and Mr. Cone gave a reason behind the increase. He said that New Zealand is internationally recognized as a stable, safe, a nation with the strong judiciary and substantial legal and professional infrastructure. He says that such a perception has led to the positive global reputation.

The OECD retains a list of tax havens and New Zealand has never featured and is not likely to feature on the list anytime soon. New Zealand along with few other nations featured on the OECD’s white list for significantly implementing the 2002 OECD model agreement. Also, the way New Zealand handles foreign trusts demonstrates leadership in tax transparency which in turn helps other governments to get relevant information upon request.

New rules were introduced in 2006 by Michael Cullen on submission of foreign trust disclosure form (IR607) and keeping records for tax purposes. New Zealand adhered to the new rules accordingly. New Zealand has 39 double tax agreements to ensure smooth cross-border trade and prevent tax evasions. Also, it has over 20 tax information exchange agreements with other nations. New Zealand can not be termed as a tax haven and all its the regulation bodies are working towards perfection.

The positive reputation of New Zealand in handling tax matters can be credited to the government as well as to service providers such as lawyers and accountants who act as foreign trustees. Cone Marshall along with his partner Geoffrey Cone, obey the highest principles of tax and trust transparency to ensure their clients get the most reliable advice on global tax and trust law.

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