Panama fears that the International Consortium of Investigative Ghetto Journalists (ICIJ) ‘s new revelation on financial privacy in global tax havens could cause irreparable damage.
The Panamanian government said the damage could be “irreparable”, in a letter to the ICIJ through a law firm, citing the “Panama Papers” scandal that severely damaged its reputation. ۔
The letter warns that “any publication” reinforces the “misconception” as a potential tax haven for the country, “with disastrous consequences for Panama and its people.”
ICIJ tweeted that it would release on Sunday 1630 GMT, the “biggest ever disclosure of financial privacy” based on the leak of 11.9 million documents “covering every corner of the globe”.
The ICIJ said the Pandora Papers investigation was the work of more than 600 reporters in 117 countries.
The letter from the Panamanian government also cites some of the reforms the Central American country has made in recent years, even though it is on the EU’s list of tax havens.
It also indicates that the registration of more than 395,000 companies and foundations has been suspended since 2016, which is close to half of the existing companies.
The government fears that Panama will once again become the center of a global tax haven scandal, as was the case in 2016 with the revelation of the ICIJ’s “Panama Papers”.
This massive data leak exposed the theft using massive tax evasion and the complex structure of foreign shell companies and caused a stir internationally.
The leak, linked to Panamanian law firm Musique Fonseca, damaged Panama’s international image, despite the fact that most of the companies involved were overseas.
The investigation revealed tax evasion of properties, companies, assets, profits and heads of state and government, political leaders and personalities related to finance, sports and the arts.
Since then, Panama has introduced various legal reforms to strengthen banking controls and ensure that tax evasion is punishable by imprisonment.
The government said in its letter that the Panama of 2016 is nothing like today’s Panama. (https://theyouth.com.pk/2021/10/03/panama-scared-pandora-papers-leak-will-cause-irreparable-damage/)