The [Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes]( has released reports evaluating the tax systems in Belize, Finland, Iceland, Nauru, Poland, Portugal, Sweden and Turkey. In a further 4 reports, the Global Forum identifies the deficiencies in the tax systems of Belgium, the Cayman Islands, Guernsey and Singapore and makes recommendations to correct them.

The reports assess the jurisdictions’ effective commitment to the international standard and real progress in tax information exchange.

The Global Forum has also adopted two supplementary reports, for Costa Rica and United Kingdom. The report on Costa Rica notes that it can now move to Phase 2, proving that it does effectively exchange information.

The Global Forum has reviewed 96 jurisdictions. The Phase 1 reviews of almost all its members – evaluating whether they have the laws necessary to exchange information – have been completed. The Phase 2 reviews have been completed for 30 jurisdictions, four of which were stand-alone Phase 2 reviews. More than 50 Phase 2 reviews are expected to be completed by the end of 2013. They will rate each jurisdiction on the individual elements of the international standard of information exchange, awarding an overall rating – “compliant,” “largely compliant,” “partially compliant” and “non-compliant”.

*“The first-stand alone Phase 2 reviews – reviewing both tax laws and their practical implementation – are an important step in the peer review process. The Global Forum has already done tremendous work in reviewing the legal framework of almost all its members. Now, the challenge is to see whether jurisdictions are able and willing to exchange information. When we issue the first set of ratings later this year we will know whether jurisdictions are complying with the international standard”,* said the Chair of the Global Forum, Kosie Louw of South Africa.