Ahead of the Prime Minister’s Anti Corruption Summit, due to take place in London tomorrow, along with my fellow APPG on Corruption Co-Chair, the APPG on Responsible Taxation, and leaders from the African, Oceanian, and the Caribbean regions of the Global Organisation of Parliamentarians Against Corruption (GOPAC), I wrote to the Prime Minister, urging him to announce public registers of beneficial ownership in the British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies at tomorrow’s Summit.
I know many of you have contacted me in the past expressing your concern about tax avoidance, particularly following the release of the Panama Papers, and I am keen to see further progress on this from the Prime Minister at tomorrow’s Summit.
Whilst I welcomed the Prime Minister’s recent announcement that Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies would create beneficial ownership registers, under the current plans these will not be made public. I would therefore like to see the Prime Minister make further progress in this area tomorrow, by introducing public registers of beneficial ownership across the United Kingdom and the British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependences which would be open to inspection by the public.
Tax avoidance deprives Governments of tax revenue and undermines public confidence in tax systems, it is therefore important that this information is made publicly available, I believe this will go a long way to restoring public confidence by increasing scrutiny in this area.
You can find the full text of the letter I wrote to the Prime Minister alongside my colleagues here.