Press release 26th Apr 2021

New Magnitsky-style sanctions regime will strengthen Britain's toolkit for tackling global corruption and dirty money

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April 26, 2021 – Transparency International UK welcomes the announcement of a new corruption sanctions regime by Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.

The new regime gives Britain the power to designate individuals and companies involved in serious corruption around the world, adding another option to the UK’s growing array of sanctions for corruption offences. 

The UK Government has published an initial list of 22 designated persons who are the first targets of the regime. Those that are designated will have their British assets frozen and be banned from travelling to the UK. The regime is international in scope, enabling the UK to align itself with the US and Canada. The new system will also be applied by the UK’s Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies. 


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

“Corruption is a global problem that needs global action, so we welcome the UK Government's new sanctions regime that will enable it to act in concert with its allies in the US and Canada. With adequate resourcing, strategic deployment and some refinement, these new capabilities should provide a useful addition to the UK's toolkit for tackling kleptocracy. Now it’s time to put these powers to good use in practice.

“Whilst this regime is by no means a silver bullet for tackling the UK’s role as a safe haven for the corrupt, it is a very positive development. The use of these powers should send a firm message to corrupt individuals and their enablers who have enjoyed the freedom to travel to and invest in the UK, that they will no longer be welcome here.”


Notes to editors

Transparency International UK is the UK’s leading independent anti-corruption organisation and part of the global Transparency International movement.

Transparency International UK is part of the UK Anti-Corruption Coalition, a group of 18 members who have issued a joint statement on the new sanctions here.

The UK's sanctions list can be found here.