India shares info on Panama Papers at OECD joint taskforce meet

India on Tuesday announced its participation in an international taskforce for sharing information and intelligence in the investigation into the so-called Panama Papers. Indian officials participated in the fourth Joint International Taskforce on Shared Intelligence and Collaboration (JITSIC) meeting in the last week of June 2017, officials said.

"Based on legal instruments under the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Council of Europe Multilateral Convention and tax treaties, a number of countries shared information in confidential competent authorities sessions, on structures that facilitate, enable and promote tax avoidance/evasion. India also shared its experience in this regard," says an official statement released on Tuesday.

"Collaboration with JITSIC has been useful for India in its fight against offshore tax evasion," the statement added.

Based on information about taxpayers and intermediaries connected to law firm Mossack Fonseca, various countries have initiated investigations into alleged tax evasions. JITSI now represents 30 project participant countries that continue to exchange, analyse and act on such information.

"In the past six months, more than 570 requests for information have been sent to 32 countries. India has also sent several requests for information to various jurisdictions in the Panama Paper cases since the last meeting in January 2017," it said.

JITSIC members have established the capability to allow for fast, effective and coordinated multilateral responses to any future data leaks and are sharing the same.

As investigations progress and more counties join the taskforce, the joint international taskforce will gather more data and identify better ways to pursue investigations and share intelligence, it said.