The term 'offshore jurisdiction' to describe Gibraltar may be dispensed with
Confidential discussions involving key lawyers on the island are taking place due to a radical overhaul of the island's corporation tax laws. Lawyers at leading Gibraltar firms Hassans and Triay & Triay are members of the island's corporation tax working group, which plans to get rid of the island's description as an offshore jurisdiction as part of its far-reaching proposals. "We don't like the word offshore. Rather, we're an international financial services centre," said a Gibraltar financial centre spokesman. It is the first of the world's 58 offshore jurisdictions to consider this route because of concerns that the term offshore is associated with secrecy and corruption. It also means that all companies, from traditionally titled offshore bodies - such as foreign businesses using the island to hold assets - to those involved in financial services and local businesses, will be described as Gibraltese companies. At the moment they have different titles and are subject to different tax regimes. Nicholas Keeling, managing partner of Denton Wilde Sapte's Gibraltar office, the only international firm on the island, said that companies are awaiting the introduction of the new tax laws before establishing trusts on the island. Keeling says that the overhaul of tax laws, due to be announced soon, will provide lawyers with a lot more advisory work.