With “Bahamas Leaks”, walls of financial secrecy take another hit

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Latest revelations further the case for public registers of the real owners of companies


In a late-day release, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists have published a new set of leaked documents that only embolden the growing number of voices calling for increased transparency in the financial system. The documents, dubbed ‘Bahamas Leaks’, include information from two financial services providers, a private bank in Jersey, and data from the corporate registry of the notoriously secretive jurisdiction of the Bahamas. The new data names a number of government officials from around the globe, including a former EU official.


In response to the “Bahamas Leaks” revelations, Porter McConnell, Director of the Financial Transparency Coalition has issued the following statement:


"This latest round of leaks simply tops an already exhaustive list of reasons why we need more transparency, and helps to chronicle how politicians, wealthy elites, and those that guide their money navigate a financial system that’s not available to the rest of us.


"It’s interesting that this revelation comes on the same day that BHP Billiton, one of the world’s largest mining companies, has come out in support of public registers of beneficial ownership information. Public registers of the real, ultimate owners of companies would make it far more difficult, and less attractive, to use anonymous shell companies to move money undetected.


"While some countries have made strides in the area of ownership transparency, Bahamas Leaks should serve as a reminder that most governments around the world have a long way to go."



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