CRS and FATCA for Tax transparency

The environment for tax reporting between international jurisdictions has been undergoing significant change in a global effort to improve tax transparency. An example is the Foreign Accounts Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) imposed by US starting in 2014. Drawing extensively on FATCA, the OECD Common Reporting Standard (CRS) is a further international initiative and is based on the development of a single global standard for the automatic exchange of information between tax authorities.

As of December 2015, 96 jurisdictions (including Cyprus) are adopting CRS, of which 77 jurisdictions have signed a Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement and the number is constantly increasing. A full list of the committed participating jurisdictions can be found at the link http://www.oecd.org/tax/transparency/AEOI-commitments.pdf).  Cyprus Government, as well as another 57 jurisdictions, have agreed to early adoption of the CRS and will undertake the necessary CRS obligations from 1st January 2016 (reporting starting in 2017).

How this will affect you

Since Cyprus is an early adopter, starting 1st January 2016 all local Financial Institutions,  including Bank of Cyprus (BOC), will need to comply with the requirements of the CRS and will contact customers (gradually during  2016) to collect certain information. Specifically, the collection of information will affect:

  • holders of new accounts opened on or after 1st January 2016 and
  • certain holders of pre-existing accounts i.e. accounts which were in existence on 31 December 2015,

This information will consist of their Jurisdiction(s) of Tax Residence and Tax Identification Number (TIN), among other fields where applicable, in the form of a self-certification.  Accounts held by BOC that fall within the scope of a Reportable Account in the CRS, will be subject to reporting on an annual basis. 

Our commitment to you

BOC is committed to comply with this requirement and collect relevant information with a minimum burden on our customers.

For further information please visit our FAQ’s.  BOC is unable to comment on an account holder’s tax position and you may need to consider professional advice if you are unsure of your personal tax circumstances.

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