Wed 25 March 2009, The Guardian

Get rid of tax havens, by all means. But it is disingenuous of Brown to claim they're relevant to our current crisis

By Marcel Berlins
French has a far more romantic term for tax havens - Paradis Fiscaux (fiscal paradises) - evoking beaches and palm trees, and there, in a picturesque side street, a courageous little bank that would rather be tortured and killed than reveal the slightest whiff of information about a client's bank account. But there have been stirrings in paradise (admittedly in its northern branches, rather than the sun-kissed Caribbean), enthusiastically publicised by Gordon Brown and Angela Merkel when they met a couple of weeks back. What's more, what to do about tax havens is apparently high on G20's agenda at next week's conference. But why? What has it got to do with solving our financial crisis?
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