Herausgeber:
Sonstige universitäre Einrichtungen
Erscheinungsjahr:
2008
PURL:
https://www.eliechtensteinensia.li/viewer/object/000347300/87/
present case of the LGT data acquisition by the BND and the use of that data by the German 
tax authorities can be viewed as an example of this internationalization. 
7.1 Damage to image or opportunity for repositioning? 
Six months after the beginning of the tax affair, Uwe Ritzer gave an apt and differentiated 
report on the situation in Liechtenstein in the SZ (5.7.2008, 28) under the title: "The refuge 
crumbles": 
"14 February 2008 changed the [...] Principality. [...] Someone traveling to the Principality 
a bit less than half a year later to assess the impact lands in a rattled country. It 1s 
wrestling with itself because it would love to continue its discreet financial business like it 
did before 14 February, but instinctively feels that things can no longer continue that way 
in the long run. In daily life in Vaduz, the Zumwinkel case no longer plays a major role. 
More or less uninvolved, the Prince's people note what the large center-right coalition 
announces every few days through the newspapers under their control: that Germany is 
brazenly covering up its own faults, since it has miserable laws that drive away any 
reasonable taxpayer." (SZ, 5.7.2008, 38) 
The leader of the opposition in the Liechtenstein Parliament, Andrea Matt, 1s quoted as 
follows: "To outsiders, there is a deceptive calm. But behind the scenes, everyone is wrestling 
heavily about how far the reforms must go." 
Massive damage to Liechtenstein's image remains, which cannot be fixed so quickly by all the 
relevant players in Liechtenstein. Irrespective of whether this was a targeted attack or simply 
deliberately accepted as it occurred, the damage to Liechtenstein's image especially affects the 
hard-working economic sectors in the country as well as respectable Liechtensteiners who are 
asked about the affair abroad and looked at with distrust. In concrete terms, the German 
insurer Allianz has pulled out of the financial center, in which it had already undertaken major 
investments. 
The German tax affair and its treatment by the examined media (and probably not just there) 
certainly have brought to light existing doubts and prejudices concerning company structures. 
"The word 'Liechtenstein' simultaneously summarizes a whole bunch of German problems," 
said SPIEGEL in its issue of 25.2.2008 (p. 74). The title of this article, "Wanted: Tax 
offender, enemy of the State", gives rise to the suspicion that the State 1s primarily interested 
in intimidating tax offenders. 
If, however, we assume that the goal of communication — not only, but also — between States 
is to assert one's own interests, and that this occurs through issue management and agenda 
setting, then we can see from the preceding document analysis that the reform process in the 
Liechtenstein financial center — which until now was unfortunately communicated far too 
little and far too shyly, in line with the mentality of the Liechtensteiners: "We only 
communicate once everything is taken care of, and even then, given our small size, not too 
loudly and rather modestly" — is now widely known and perhaps also has been accelerated. In 
this light, the tax affair would be of benefit to both sides. The prejudices against Liechtenstein 
and a bad taste remain, however. 
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