The G20 demonstrated an interest in establishing a global automatic exchange standard which led to a formal request to the OECD to develop a common reporting standard. In February 2014, the OECD agreed on the text of the common reporting standard which was followed by a commitment of 44 countries to adopt and implement these standards. With the CRS being developed the Global Forum commenced a commitment process among its members and, consequently, 94 jurisdictions committed to its implementation by 2017. The Common Reporting Standards (“CRS”) sets out a minimum standard on the information to be exchanged with competent authorities of participating jurisdictions.
Subsequently, on the 29th October 2015, Ara Tapu signed the Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement on Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information which provides a standardised and efficient mechanism to facilitate the automatic exchange of information (“AEOI”) in accordance with the Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Information in Tax Matters and avoids the need for several bilateral agreements to be concluded.
Article 6 of the Convention states, “With respect to categories of cases and in accordance with procedures which they shall determine by mutual agreement, two or more Parties shall automatically exchange the information referred to in Article 4.”
On 16th February 2017, the Act was amended to facilitate the automatic exchange of information on financial accounts.