Here is an article describing how the writer (presumably an American resident) actually went through the steps of setting up such an account suited for dirty funds - in Singapore. What an eye-opener for the sceptical guys who don't believe that $inkiepore is a $afe haven for illicit $$$.
My Big Fat Belizean, Singaporean Bank Account
First, I Googled “company registration tax haven” and randomly picked three firms that set up accounts in offshore jurisdictions. Then I called each and explained that I was hoping to minimize my tax exposure and didn’t want anyone to know anything about my finances. Each company quickly noted that I should consult a lawyer to make sure that I wasn’t breaking the law. Then they calmly explained how to create an account that, it seemed to me, was unlikely to be discovered by the I.R.S. or any other authority.
I ended up working with A&P Intertrust, a Canadian company that I chose largely because I liked its Web site the best. (The other two companies’ sites appeared stuck in a late-’90s style with lots of flashing boxes.) A&P works with the governments of Panama, the British Virgin Islands and Belize. (Other companies that I contacted prefer the Seychelles, Cyprus or the Cayman Islands, where Mitt Romney has been reported to have money.) I decided to start my shell company in Belize because it would be exempt from all Belizean taxes and, as A&P’s site explained, “information about beneficial owners, shareholders, directors and officers is not filed with the Belize government and not available to the public.” And I’ve been to Belize and like the place.
Setting up the company was a lot cheaper than I expected. A&P charged $900 for a basic Belizean incorporation and another $85 for a corporate seal to emboss legal documents. For $650 more, A&P offered to open a bank account to stash my fledgling operation’s money in Singapore — a country, the Web site also noted, that “cannot gather information on foreigners’ bank accounts, bank-deposit interest and investment gains under domestic tax law.” And for another $690, it offered to assign a “nominee” who would be listed as the official manager and owner of my business but would report to me under a secret power-of-attorney contract. Then an A&P associate asked me to fill out the incorporation information online, just so she wouldn’t type in anything incorrectly. The whole thing took about 10 minutes.
Wow...“cannot gather information on foreigners’ bank accounts, bank-deposit interest and investment gains under domestic tax law.”
The "domestic tax law" refers to the tax laws in Singapore. Hence if you open an account in Singapore as a foreign investor the way the above is described, you can hoard your millions, even billions, of your dirty $$$ and Singapore's domestic tax laws is such that it protects you, your identity and your dirty funds from the govt of your country.
So there you have it! Done in just 10 minutes, as claimed by the writer!
No law broken but still shady -
The writer claims that no law has been broken, but nevertheless, it is still a shady transaction. This can be seen when the company the writer was opening an account with became silent, after it was told that the writer was a journalist working on an article about offshore tax havens. See extract below:
Amazingly neither A&P nor I broke any law in Canada, Belize, Singapore or the United States. The company required, in compliance with international legal standards, that I e-mail it a notarized copy of my passport, driver’s license and some other identity documents. But a company representative also reassured me that these would not be visible to any tax authority. Just before they processed the paperwork, I explained that I was a journalist working on an article about offshore tax havens, and I haven’t heard from them since.
Shady setup is for big companies and the super rich who wish to hide their $$$ from govts -
This kind of setup is obviously for the super rich who have tons of $$$, to make it worth their while. The idea is to keep the $$$ away from their respective govts to evade tax. It is also obvious that this is the perfect haven for illegal dirty $$$ to be stashed away from the prying eyes of the law. Extract continues:
Setting up an account may be easy, but managing one is expensive. Following the law requires a team of lawyers and accountants to carefully monitor tax laws in dozens of countries and maintain accounts that stay on the safe side of confusing rules. It’s not really worth the cost for anyone other than wealthy investors looking to put aside money, tax-free, for future generations. Or for large multinationals who prefer to centralize their global cash-flow stream in a place that doesn’t tax corporations or require a lot of financial reporting. Why would a huge company like G.E. want to pay U.S. taxes every time its Spanish subsidiary sells parts to a company in Belarus when it could avoid them by incorporating offshore?
It’s easy to imagine that most other kinds of offshore activity are shady, but there is no definitive way to know, because we don’t even know how much money is in these centers. The estimates, however, are striking. The Bank for International Settlements, which collects voluntary reports from banks in 44 countries, offers the best single source of data. It counts around $31 trillion of foreign-owned assets in the world’s banks and estimates that about $4 trillion is in offshore financial centers. An estimated $1.5 trillion is in the Cayman Islands alone. The country of 52,000, which is about the size of Blaine, Minn., has more foreign-owned deposits than Japan or the Netherlands.
By the B.I.S.’s own estimation, the data — which do not include reports from Belize, the Seychelles and other offshore havens — are quite incomplete. The Tax Justice Network, a global research firm that advocates against such havens, suggests that the amount hidden offshore is between $21 trillion and $32 trillion. If properly taxed, that could yield more than $200 billion in revenue around the world. Furthermore, because a 2010 McKinsey & Company report estimated the world’s financial assets at about $200 trillion, somewhere around 10 percent or more of the world’s wealth is effectively invisible. And it’s also almost certainly in the hands of the people and institutions that most actively influence major investment decisions.
My thoughts -
Of course, not all the billions and trillions are stashed in Singapore. There are other countries too. But Singapore is ONE OF THEM. The fact that Singapore has projected itself as a developed country with a stable govt and infrastructure, is certainly a drawing factor for crooks and the like, compared to say another country like Cayman Islands.
It is sad that the PAP has been giving the world, and more importantly Singaporeans, the idea that they are a clean and un-corrupt govt. Too bad for them that in the era of the internet, this illusion is slowly fading away fast. The world, and Singaporeans, are beginning to learn the truth.