updated 6:36 PM CET, Mar 18, 2023

EU updates its 'Tax Haven Blacklist'; three U.S. territories remain among the 12

The European Union has unveiled its latest updates to its list of Non-cooperative Jurisdictions for Tax Purposes, sometimes referred to as its "Tax Haven Blacklist " – but three U.S. overseas territories that have been on the list for years remain among the 12 jurisdictions. 

The three U.S. overseas territories on the European Council's list are American Samoa, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Of these, American Samoa and Guam have been on the list since it was first officially unveiled on Dec. 5, 2017, when they were included among 17 jurisdictions deemed to be "Non-cooperative Jurisdictions for Tax Purposes," while the U.S. Virgin Islands was added as of March 13, 2018.

The EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions for tax purposes was established in December 2017. According to the European Council, it is "part of the EU’s external strategy on taxation" and is designed to "contribute to ongoing efforts to promote tax good governance worldwide".

It's updated every six months, and as part of the EU's arrangement, the 27 EU countries are obliged to undertake "defensive measures" against the named jurisdictions, to consider the list when making foreign policy and when forging development and economic ties. The European Commission is also reported to take the list into account when making financing and investment decisions. 

The current list includes three new additions: the Turks and Caicos, the Bahamas and Anguilla. In addition to these, and the three U.S. overseas territories, the other Blacklist jurisdictions are Fiji, Palau, Panama, Samoa, Trinidad and Tobago and Vanuatu. 

According to published reports, EU member countries aren't included among those screen for inclusion on the list. 

In a statement, the European Council said it "regrets that these jurisdictions are non-cooperative on tax matters, and invites them to engage with the EU’s Code of Conduct Group in order to resolve the identified issues."

It added that this was the first time that the Turks and Caicos Islands appeared on the list, whereas "the Bahamas were already once listed in 2018, and Anguilla once in 2020."

The list is next due to be updated in February, 2023.