BVI-registered agriculture technology company Origin Agritech announced that on June 5, 2019 received a letter from the NASDAQ Stock Market, informing that the company is not compliant with the listing rules.
According to the company’s Form 20-F for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2019, stockholders’ equity was US$3,396,000, while it is required by NASDAQ listing rule to have a minimum of US$10,000,000 in equity. Now the BVI company must submit a plan to NASDAQ within 45 days, of how to regain compliance. In case it is accepted, Origin will get an extension of up to 180 days from the Notice Date. If the plan is not accepted, the company will be able to appeal the decision.
According to the report published by the Tax Justice Network, the UK territories of the BVI, Cayman Islands and Bermuda are the ones to contribute the most to global tax avoidance, among all the tax havens, and Anguilla, Guernsey, Jersey and the Turks and Caicos Islands also facilitate tax evasion. The report also showed the responsibility of the United Kingdom for a global schemes of tax avoidance.
With more than one third of world’s corporate tax dodging, the UK is the greatest facilitator of corporate tax evasion, followed by the Netherlands.
Most of the top 10 tax haven jurisdictions, including BVI, are small countries, but they are home to trillions of dollars of foreign direct investment, and several of these flows may be because of diminishing tax bills. It is stated in the report that the range at which jurisdictions have allowed corporate tax dodging risks to attract multinationals has made countries’ corporate tax rates “meaningless”, and triggered a “race to the bottom” that would further drain tax revenues and especially influence underdeveloped nations.
The BVI FSC issued public statement informing the public that Jim Morgan has never been an employee of the Commission or been authorized as its representative. The person is alleged to contact individuals via email, falsely purporting to represent the Financial Services Commission with the purpose to compensate for investment losses. Jim Morgan requests access to online bank account of individuals to make the compensation.
In the statement, the Commission strongly advised members of public against providing personal banking information or access to their personal bank account to any third parties, and invited to provide any relevant information on this matter to the BVI FSC, as well as the identity of any other individuals purporting to represent the Commission.
The latest US International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, in its part dedicated to money laundering, put the British Virgin Islands on the list of “Major Money Laundering Jurisdictions” for the year 2018. Among other territories listed there were all major Caribbean and Central American countries, including Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curacao, Dominica, Panama, St Kitts and Nevis, Venezuela and many others.
The US added also the United Kingdom, Spain and The Netherlands, and itself on the list of major money laundering jurisdictions. The countries not included are some US protectorates along with France overseas territories Martinique, Guadeloupe and French Guiana. It is not indicated in the report whether the US will impose any sanctions on those countries included on the list of the major money laundering centers.
The United States is a founder and member of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), which works in close co-operation on tax-avoidance issues with the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), related to the European Union. The EU tax haven blacklist seeks to penalize countries found to be tax havens and money laundering centers, while the INCSR is mainly short note on to further guidance on AML regimes.
BVI Governor Augustus Jaspert is planning to raise concerns of campaign financing during the 2019 General Elections, saying that campaign financing laws would limit the risk of corruption.
In the preliminary report of the team of international and independent officials, they expressed their concerns that there were no laws that require parties and candidates to divulge the origin of the funding of their campaign, and the ways how it was spent. It was noted in the report that, without adequate legislation on campaign finance, the jurisdiction is not compliant with the UN Convention against Corruption which was extended to the Virgin Islands in 2006. The governor agreed with election observers’ argument, and said that while he is prepared to discuss the issue with the government, it would be left to Premier Fahie to decide if it would be taken forward to Cabinet.
Now the final report from election observers is expected to arrive; in the preliminary report, it was also stated by election observers: “With continuing rumours of vote-buying and corruption by many interlocutors, a lack of financial accountability and legislative provision undermines and erodes voter trust in the system.”
Investors were reminded by Bronstein, Gewirtz & Grossman, LLC that a class action lawsuit had been filed against BVI-incorporated company China TechFaith Wireless Communication Technology Limited and some of its officers. The complaint, initiated on behalf of shareholders who acquired China TechFaith shares between July 12, 2018 through December 19, 2018, has the purpose to recover damages for the following alleged violations: the BVI company made materially false and misleading statements about the profitability of its agreement to sell its wholly-owned subsidiary, failed to adequately disclose the impact of changing market conditions, and made misleading statements about its business, operations and prospects.
Along with Bronstein, Gewirtz & Grossman, LLC corporate litigation boutique, BVI company’s shareholders are represented by the Schall Law Firm, a national shareholder rights litigation firm which announced filing of a class action lawsuit against China TechFaith Wireless Communication Technology Limited , and encouraged investors with losses over US$100,000 to contact the firm.
C3Nano Inc., the world’s performance leader in transparent conductive inks and films used in flexible displays, touchscreens and other products, refuted the claims made by China-based Cambrios, which is a subsidiary of British Virgin Islands-registered CAM Holding Co.
BVI company’s subsidiary tries to initiate an inter partes review (IPR) related to the validity of one of C3Nano’s United States patents. C3Nano has a large number of core patents protecting its commercial products; the arguable patent is related to C3Nano’s unique technology based on fusing nanomaterials.
C3Nano is widely recognized as the first company to successfully develop a commercially viable and scalable transparent conductor based on nanoscale metallic fused conductors, with performance exceeding all other competitive technologies. C3Nano has won several key business opportunities over Cambrios and its BVI parent company CAM Holding Co. Ltd. as well as other competitors due to the superior performance of C3Nano products. Recent patent-related action by Cambrios represents ongoing fallout from the May 2018 Society for Information Display (SID) conference in Los Angeles, when Cambrios’ lead scientist presented data that raised questions among industry players of Cambrios’ possible infringement of C3Nano’s fusing IP.
The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) is making the assessment of whether the Recovery and Development Agency (RDA) is capable of managing funds from US$65mln loan given to the BVI for reconstruction and rehabilitation purposes. During CDB’s annual media conference last week, director of projects at the bank Daniel Best said that they are waiting a report that should follow recent evaluation of the RDA.
At the moment, the Ministry of Finance of the British Virgin Islands is in conduct of money from the loan. It is suggested that the bank would give permit to central government to take control over the loan until the end of assessment. Also, the director said that they as a development institution need to ensure that the RDA is competent and capable of implementing the projects once the arrangement is sorted out.
The British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission has issued the Public Statement concerning Global World Technology Limited, to make the customers, creditors and general public aware that this company has never been registered in the British Virgin Islands, and never been licensed by the Commission to carry on financial services business.
Global World Technology Limited is circulating a forged business license falsely purporting to have been issued by the FSC authorising the company to conduct trading services as an entity regulated by the Commission. Members of public are cautioned against conducting any business with the named company.
In the end of December 2018, the Dutch Government published a list of 21 low-tax jurisdictions which have corporate tax rate of less than 9 per cent. The Government will implement new anti-tax avoidance measures for the companies having business in these territories.
Among the countries on the blacklist there are the British Virgin Islands, Belize, the Cayman Islands, Anguilla, the Bahamas, and many others; it includes also five jurisdictions which are already on the European Union’s blacklist. All these territories will fall within the scope of new Dutch controlled foreign companies (CFC) rules, effective from January 1, 2019.
The new rules which are under the EU’s Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive are intended to ensure that the EU country in which parent company is domiciled will be required to tax certain profits that are parked in a low or no tax country. The company will get tax credit for any taxes paid abroad.
Also, the Dutch tax authority will no longer issue tax rulings to taxpayers regarding tax structures with companies domiciled in the listed above low-tax jurisdictions. The list is expected to be reviewed annually.