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A Good Day in the Fight Against Corruption

London, 12 May 2016 – Commenting on today’s Anti-Corruption Summit, Robert Barrington, Executive Director of Transparency International UK, said:

“As the Summit host, the pressure was on the UK to live up to the pre-Summit hype.  The announcements made today are in the main impressive.  They have the potential to make a significant impact on corruption in the UK, and in particular its role as a safe haven for the world’s corrupt money.

Among the important commitments in the Summit communique are that there will be a new national anti-corruption strategy, that secrecy will be stripped away from UK property ownership and companies that bid for public contracts, and that there will be a consultation on a new law on failure to prevent money laundering.  Combined with other announcements in the run-up to the Summit, such as the consultations on Unexplained Wealth Orders and reforming the UK’s broken anti-money laundering supervisory regime, this is very substantial progress.

But there are two caveats.  First, some of these commitments, such as introducing Unexplained Wealth Orders, are being put out for consultation, and there is no guarantee they will happen.  Secondly, this was a missed opportunity to lay out a plan for how the Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies will be required to create public registers of beneficial ownership.  This secrecy in the UK’s tax havens remains its weak spot in any discussion on corruption.

Overall, while not perfect, and while there is much more to do, this was a good day in the fight against corruption.”



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Dominic Kavakeb
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Read 200 times Last modified on Thursday, 12 May 2016 17:13

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