Critics Target Bribery Law
The Wall Street Journal, November 28, 2011
France: A vampire and a deposit box for Africa’s looted funds?
Modern Ghana, November 23, 2011
‘Tackle Tax Havens’ campaign launched
The Telegraph, November 25, 2011
Counting the cost of tax havens
The Sydney Morning Herald, November 26, 2011
Occupy London sets out agenda on how it wants to change the economic world
The Guardian, November 27, 2011
The James Mintz Group recently released a fascinating interactive database, which compiles decades of data on violations and penalties under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the U.S. flagship legislation that makes bribery of foreign officials a crime. Since its inception, prosecutors have penalized over 200 companies under the FCPA in about 80 countries, amassing about $4 billion in penalties. The database, which they call Where the Bribes are Paid, allows users to see how the total penalties amassed in each country break down by sector.
It is a relatively unsurprising finding that the energy sector has generated the largest penalties under the FCPA, to the tune of $2 billion or just about half of the total. The consulting sector comes in second, with $847 million in penalties, and the defense industry in third, with $443 million.
The top countries for penalties are also unsurprising. Nigeria tops the list, with most of its penalties in the energy sector. Nigeria is followed by China, Russia, Mexico, Argentina, and Iraq. Patrick Kelkar, a partner at the Mintz Group who handles FCPA investigations, pointed out that China was the only country in the database that cut across all of the sectors.
Global finance lost in cyberspace
The Deccan Herald, November 23, 2011
Money Laundering and Nuclear Proliferation
U.S. targets Iran banks for money laundering
Where Greeks hide their savings
The Global Post, November 23, 2011
Most businesses will not be worried by well-targeted anti-avoidance rule, says IoD
Tax Journal, November 21, 2011
Greece goes after big tax dodgers
The Global Post, November 22, 2011
I was delighted to talk at the launch of Eurodad’s new report – ‘Exposing the lost billions: How financial transparency by multinationals on a country by country basis can aid development‘ – last evening in the European Parliament.
The report is on country-by-country reporting and is another major contribution to the debate now going on in Europe on this issue, and how far such reporting should go.
The EU has conceded the case for country-by-country reporting, but only so far with regard to the extractive industries and forestry, and only with regard to payments to be made to host countries by companies extracting such resources.
Don’t get me wrong: I welcome this disclosure, but it’s far short of what is needed. As the representative of the Commission speaking at the event conceded, at a time when a deficit of tax revenue is at the core of the crisis facing Europe to concentrate solely on how accounting may be used to tackle corruption, but not financial disclosure or even tax due in developing countries does seem to be an ambition remarkably short of that required.
RM893b lost to ‘capital flight’
Free Malaysia Today, November 22, 2011
Extractive sectors and illicit financial flows: What role for revenue governance initiatives?
Trust Law, November 22, 2011
Where has all the Greek money gone?
RT, November 22, 2011
Buffett-Ducking Billionaires Avoid Reporting Cash Gains to IRS
Bloomberg, November 21, 2011
Report urges EU to get tough on multinational tax avoidance
EURODAD, November 21, 2011
Pfizer Near Settlement on Bribery
The Wall Street Journal, November 21, 2011
Corruption in Afghanistan: Worse than you thought
Salon, November 17, 2011
Tackling Sports Corruption In Israel
Transparency International (blog), November 17, 2011
Tax pacts track down ¥85 billion
The Japan Times, November 19, 2011
Congo asset sales lose state billions of dlrs -UK MP
Reuters Africa, November 18, 2011
Two weeks ago, the twenty most powerful leaders of the world headed to Cannes, France for the G20 Summit. It was the G20’s sixth meeting in a series of ongoing discussions about the world’s financial markets. While the meeting did not reach any concrete policy decisions on a host of important issues plaguing our financial world, some of the accomplishments of the meeting included a few pointed and poignant statements from some of the world’s most powerful. One of these statements came from Indian Prime Minister Manomohan Singh, who urged the world’s twenty most powerful countries to agree to automatic exchange of tax information. His comments were an important step forward for the world and for India.
The other powerful statement to come out of the meeting in Cannes was from French President Nicholas Sarkozy, who had some very strong words for uncooperative low tax jurisdictions. Sarkozy intonated that a list of eleven uncooperative jurisdictions should be “excluded from the international community,” including: Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, Antigua, Botswana, Brunei, Panama, Seychelles, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. He added that a list of countries which do not conform to acceptable tax practices would be published at all future G20 summits. “We don’t want to have tax havens any more.” He said “Our message is very clear.”
Loud and clear, sir.
Whistleblower puts Julius Bär in a fix
World Radio Switzerland, November 18, 2011
No verdict in case of Swiss ex-banker linked to WikiLeaks
Reuters Canada, November 17, 2011
UBS slashes investment bank arm
ABC News, November 18, 2011
AP Impact: Right-to-know laws often ignored
Associated Press, November 17, 2011
Grassley Presses Holder on FCPA Guidance
The Wall Street Journal, November 17, 2011
Each week, the Task Force blog will feature a video relating to the global fight against corruption, tax evasion, and poverty.
This week, U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) introduced the Incorporation Transparency and Law Enforcement Assistance Act. The bill would require all U.S. corporations to disclose a real human being as the beneficial owner of the corporation. Ann Hollingshead wrote a great blog post about the bill earlier this week.
This week’s featured video shows an excellent discussion about beneficial ownership from the Task Force 2011 Conference in Paris, France. They discuss how a lack of disclosed beneficial ownership protects corrupt dictators and tax dodgers from law enforcement scrutiny, why legitimate businesses will not be hurt by the requirement, and implications for international development.
The panel is chaired by Anthea Lawson of Global Witness, and includes Raymond Baker, Director of the Task Force and Global Financial Integrity and Jean Pesme, Coordinator of the Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative (StAR) at the World Bank.
The video is a valuable tool for anyone who wants or needs to know more about how illicit money is moved around the globe. It runs for 1 hour.
Take firm stand on AFSPA: Advani tells Center
Greater Kashmir, November 16, 2011
European Union stumbles to Busan. Foreign Affairs Council agrees common EU position
EURODAD, November 16, 2011
Ten means to put an end to black money issue
The Economic Times, November 17, 2011
Tax evasion pressure maintained on Switzerland
Swiss Info, November 16, 2011
Greece has 60 billion euros in unpaid taxes: EU report
Reuters, November 17, 2011
Imagine for a moment that airline security were left up to individual states, rather than the federal government. It’s perhaps not too much of a stretch of the imagination to conclude that different states would adopt different levels of security. For example, some states might require their passengers to provide identification to ensure they aren’t terrorists and pass their bags through x-ray machines to ensure those passengers aren’t trying to load illicit materials onto the airplane. Other states, though, might think it’s advantageous to reduce their security requirements. They might argue that by reducing screening, they could trim down wait times and attract more passengers into their airport. They might argue this would create more jobs and incomes within their state.
Do you see the problem with this? Of course by reducing security, those states would also attract another kind of crowd. The criminal kind. Terrorists would take advantage of these weak screening procedures. One state’s security gap would open the entire country to risk.
We would never allow it to happen in aviation. So why do we allow it to happen in banking?
March 11, 2014·
Joint NGO Media Reaction Financial Transparency Coalition – Eurodad – Global Witness – Transparency International EU Office – Oxfam Brussels, March 11, 2014 – Today, the European Parliament endorsed the creation of public registers of who really owns companies, trusts and other legal structures. This will make it much harder for criminals, tax evaders, corrupt politicians and other money launderers to hide their identity, and their illicitly-acquired assets, behind anonymous companies and trusts.
February 20, 2014·
Joint NGO media reaction Financial Transparency Coalition – Eurodad - Global Witness - Oxfam A cross political party agreement in the European Parliament ...
December 5, 2013·
The FACT (Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency) Coalition today praised Representative Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) and Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) for the introduction ...