David Rosenbloom Comments on Tax Shelters in Daily Beast
Republican industrialist Lisa Scheller is vying to represent about 750,000 residents in Pennsylvania’s 7th Congressional District. But Scheller has interests in another region of about the same size—a half a world away.
That would be the island nation of Mauritius, a notorious international tax haven in the Indian Ocean—about 500 miles east of Madagascar—which has featured prominently in investigative reporting on the Panama Papers and Paradise Papers.
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The firm also does business in Hong Kong and the Seychelles, two other known offshore havens. It has no U.S. address.
But Mauritius is in some ways unique.
David Rosenbloom, international tax law specialist at Caplin & Drysdale and former director of the Treasury Department’s Office of International Tax Affairs, told The Daily Beast that the island has been most well-known as a tax haven for people and corporations doing business in India.
“Mauritius is sort of an Indian invention,” Rosenbloom said. “The reason people use Mauritius is that there was a tax treaty between India and Mauritius that’s very beneficial to Mauritius. It became very common to invest in India through Mauritius.”
Rosenbloom pointed to a landmark 2003 Indian Supreme Court ruling, where the justices effectively sided with a collection of Mauritius-based corporate interests, giving a pass to a tax treaty that was accused of facilitating tax evasion.
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