PM Changes Mind On Offshore Accounts - The Reykjavik Grapevine

PM Changes Mind On Offshore Accounts

Published April 11, 2016

Photos by
Art Bicnick

Prime Minister Sigurður Ingi Jóhannsson has changed his position on offshore bank accounts, calling them “unnatural” though not illegal.

In an interview with Morgunblaðið, Sigurður said that he looked into whether or not it is legally possible to prevent Icelanders from putting money into offshore bank accounts, and discovered it was not. He told reporters he considered the use of offshore bank accounts to be “unnatural”, although not automatically illegal – if the money is reported to the tax authorities in Iceland.

This is a completely different position from the one he has taken in the very recent past on this issue.

Sigurður has publicly defended the Prime Minister since the Panama Papers story broke, going so far as to defend the use of offshore accounts by saying, “It is complicated to have money in Iceland.”

Sigurður dug in further on the subject of offshore accounts in parliament last week, saying that he considers it “no big deal” to keep money in “low tax areas”.

For more on this continuing story, follow our Panama Papers tag on Grapevine.is/news.


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