Press release 19th Oct 2016

Addressing corruption at home vital to tackling corruption overseas

Dominic Kavakeb 
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19th October 2016, London – The UK must deliver on its long-awaited National Anti-Corruption Strategy according to Transparency International UK (TI-UK) in response to the “Tackling Corruption Overseas” report from the parliamentary International Development Committee.

TI-UK agrees with the report’s conclusions that the UK’s ability to fight corruption globally is reliant on whether its own house is in order. This includes the need for concerted action to bring the UK’s Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies into line with UK law through the introduction of a public register of beneficial ownership, to reveal the true owners of companies that are currently hidden in impenetrable layers of secrecy.

Robert Barrington, Transparency International UK Executive Director said:

“Recent months have seen good progress in the UK’s fight against corruption, with some early indications that momentum gathered under the previous Government will be picked up under the premiership of Theresa May. However, as this report highlights, the promises that have been made now need to be turned into concrete action, most importantly through the introduction of a world-class Anti-Corruption Strategy that is wide-ranging and  cross-government.”

“The UK's vital contribution to international development is easily undermined if corrupt funds from developing countries are laundered through the UK and used to invest in London property or other assets.

"The UK is a prime location for the laundering of illicit funds, and there is no doubt that UK companies and individuals facilitate this process. The Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies remain the UK’s Achilles’ heel in efforts to end its role as a safe haven for corrupt money.”

“The Government has taken an important step by introducing the Criminal Finances Bill, that included Unexplained Wealth Orders; it now needs to show it is serious through publishing a world-class National Anti-Corruption Strategy.  This will give the UK the authority and credibility to speak about corruption on the world stage, as well as setting out how it will deal with key issues related to corruption like money laundering, people trafficking and global insecurity.”


Notes to Editors: