Guyana Gov’t advances request for info on US treasury sanctions

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See below the full statement issued by Minister of Finance Dr. Ashni Singh:

It would be recalled that, immediately following the actions taken on June 11 by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) within the United States Department of the Treasury to sanction certain Guyanese individuals and entities, the Government of Guyana wrote the US authorities requesting relevant information to be shared with us to facilitate our own investigation of the matters concerned.

Those requests for information were sent by myself to the US Department of the Treasury, and by the Commissioner General of the Guyana Revenue Authority under the ambit of the Tax Information Exchange Agreement between Guyana and the US, and we have remained in close contact with the US authorities since.

Earlier today, we were updated by our US partners that a request should now be sent from the office of the Attorney General to the US Department of Justice, who will then work with OFAC to gather source documentation on the matter. We were further advised that, while this could be a long process, it should be aided by the fact that both Guyana and the US are signatories to the Inter-American Convention on Mutual Legal Assistance. Additional information was also shared with us on the mutual legal assistance process.

Our Government will now submit the request following the process advised.

We will also continue to pursue, through the appropriate channel, the obtention of relevant information covered by the Tax Information Exchange Agreement. This Agreement provides for the exchange of information to administer and enforce laws concerning the taxes specified therein, to assure the accurate assessment and collection of taxes to prevent fiscal fraud and evasion, and to develop improved information sources for tax matters.

In addition to the mutual legal assistance process, we expect that the arrangements in place for exchange of tax information and cooperation between tax authorities will provide a means through which relevant information can be shared on matters of this nature in a timely and effective manner.

We will continue to work closely with all our US counterparts in order to advance this matter in the most thorough and expeditious manner possible.

This update is being provided in keeping with our commitment to ensure that this matter is managed with the highest level of transparency.

 

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