All French banks to close tax haven units
All French banks will begin taking steps in March to close their branches and subsidiaries in countries deemed to be tax havens, the deputy head of the French banking federation said on Thursday.
"French banks have taken the decision to commit to the closure of their subsidiaries and branches that are on the OECD grey list in March 2010," he said after a meeting with French President Nicholas Sarkozy.
Countries on the grey list, drafted by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, have taken steps to improve their banking and tax data transparency but have yet to fully meet OECD standards.
Perol said the decision by the French banks "shows that things are changing and changing fast."
The recent G20 summit closed with leaders agreeing to impose sanctions starting in March on countries deemed to be uncooperative in the sharing of tax information.
French banking giant BNP Paribas on Monday announced plans to close its subsidiaries in countries still on the OECD grey list.