Stronger collaboration has begun between EU domiciles to tighten regulation and eradicate the offshore stigma.

Regulators on tax havens such as Gibraltar, Guernsey, Isle of Man and Malta are forming an 'axis' where company information can be swapped more easily.

Last week, Gibraltar's Financial Services Comm-ission (FSC) and the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) signed a memorandum of understanding on exchange of information.

The memorandum was signed in Malta by MFSA chairman Professor JV Banister and Marcus Killick, chairman and commissioner of the FSC.

This agreement will establish "a formal basis for co-operation, including the exchange of information and investigative assistance" for financial services companies.

As part of the deal, both organisations will send staff on "fact finding missions" in the respective jurisdictions, the FSC said.

Certain members of the Offshore Group of Insurance Supervisors (OGIS), which represents 19 of the smaller international domiciles, want to see the organisation have "a stronger voice" in the international community.

OGIS secretary Alan Fleming said: "One of the most important themes of concern to OGIS members, following recent IMF reviews, is that there should be an end to the offshore prejudice.

"What matters is whether or not a jurisdiction is well regulated and cooperative, not whether it is onshore or offshore."