7 Apr 2016

NZers have tried to use foreign trusts to hide wealth - IRD

7:52 pm on 7 April 2016

Inland Revenue says audits have found New Zealanders have tried to use foreign trusts to hide their wealth.

The trusts are in the spotlight following a massive dump of documents about the business of a Panamanian law firm, which showed New Zealand is used by the world's wealthy elite to set up tax shelters.

Inland Revenue says it continuously scrutinises the nearly 12,000 foreign trusts to ensure they comply with the law.

Its manager of international revenue strategy, John Nash, says few problems have been found.

Mr Nash says that includes New Zealanders trying to hide behind foreign trusts, which they're not allowed to do.

He says New Zealanders face stiff penalties if they try to cheat the IRD.