55th Session of the UN General
Assembly Told of Bahamas’ Position

Bahamas Foreign Affairs Minister Janet Bostwick has taken The Bahamas’ case against the blacklisting of its financial services sector to the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

In an address before the General Assembly, The Minister pledged The Bahamas’ continued cooperation in the fight against money laundering. She indicated that the country is currently amending legislation and reinforcing regulatory regimes in an effort to comply with international best practices. “While The Bahamas will move expeditiously to correct deficiencies in our financial services sector, we call upon the FATF and other concerned financial agencies established by the developed countries to immediately adopt open and transparent procedures to recognise when such deficiencies have been corrected, and to then take the necessary action as a matter of priority”.

It has been a source of serious concern to The Bahamas that one group of countries, viz. the OECD, would seek to unilaterally determine what constitutes harmful tax competition in financial services. “We urge those countries to cooperate in resolving these issues on the basis of constructive multilateral dialogue, given that the pressures applied in this and other areas not only disrupt growth and development, but could well lead to the reversal of the gains made in the development process”, the Minister stated.

Prime Minister Ingraham currently is leading a delegation to Europe, with the intent of informing the developed countries of changes already made and those proposed within the financial services sector.