Tax-haven transparency won’t stop money laundering in Britain

Whatever ministers say, questionable companies can hide in plain sight
The Guardian (UK)
Tuesday, May 8, 2018

money laundering washing machineBritain’s overseas territories are to be forced to adopt public registers of company ownership by the end of the decade. That’s a step in the right direction – and one many of us have long been calling for. But do not let the focus far afield distract you from the problem closer to home. It remains far too easy to launder money through companies in the UK. Over £90bn a year is estimated to be laundered through the UK financial system. The government recently announced reforms to tackle money laundering carried out through anonymous entities. But they will make little difference, because it is too easy to create companies in the UK, and for the most part, regulators do nothing about it.