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Transparency International to submit evidence to Treasury Committee Inquiry on economic crime

 29th March 2018, London – Transparency International welcomes the Treasury Committee’s coming inquiry into economic crime, and hope this will contribute to the Government adding more urgency towards ending the UK’s role as a safe haven for corrupt money.

Successive Governments have committed to tackling money laundering into the UK and whilst some positive advances, such as the implementation of Unexplained Wealth Orders, have been made, words have not always been met with action.

Our recent research found £4.4 billion worth of property we consider bought with suspicious wealth, yet the promised public register revealing the true owners of overseas companies buying UK property has yet to be legislated for.

Transparency International also calls on the Treasury Committee to ensure the role of the British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies is included within the scope of the inquiry. According to Transparency International research, with Global Witness and Who Owns England?, 66% of all anonymous companies that own UK property are based in British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies.

Duncan Hames, Director of Policy at Transparency International UK, said:

“Recent events seemed to have propelled some much needed new impetus into the UK’s fight against dirty money and we very much welcome the Treasury Committee holding this inquiry.”

“We look forward to submitting our evidence of the UK’s role as a safe haven for corrupt money. After the release of the Panama Papers, the UK Government committed to tackling money laundering, although some of the issues identified then remain unaddressed by serious action. We have cross party consensus on a public register of beneficial owners of overseas companies owning UK property, now we just need it brought in.”

“The role of the UK’s Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies must be an important part of this inquiry. Time and time again, where we see global corruption scandals, we also see anonymous companies based in these jurisdictions helping to launder the proceeds of stolen wealth. The financial secrecy in these havens must be brought to an end.”

***ENDS***

Contact:

Dominic Kavakeb
020 3096 7695
079 6456 0340
dominic.kavakeb@transparency.org.uk

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Read 46 times Last modified on Wednesday, 28 March 2018 16:25

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