The transparency revolution – happy anniversary?

The transparency revolution – happy anniversary?


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David Cameron speaking at the World Economic Forum. Photo: World Economic Forum

David Cameron speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos. Photo: World Economic Forum

A year ago at Davos, UK Prime Minister David Cameron set out a ground-breaking agenda for the G8 focused on trade, tax and transparency. At the G8 Summit itself, good progress was made on the “Transparency Revolution”, including commitments to develop a system for the automatic exchange of tax information and to crack down on the use of anonymous shell companies – aka “Phantom Firms” – for money laundering.

ONE is looking to build on the transparency wins of 2013 and is particularly hard at work in the fight against Phantom Firms – shady corporate entities that play a key role in robbing developing countries of the resources that they need to invest in poverty reduction – in Brussels, London, Paris and Berlin.

Three questions for the Prime Minister in Davos this time around:

1) Is the UK on track to deliver on his commitment to establish a public register of who owns and controls companies registered in the UK – a truly transparent register of company ownership, including the information that will be needed to address the scourge of anonymous shell companies?

2) Is the UK doing all it can in Brussels to ensure that the EU’s Anti-Money Laundering Directive will require public disclosure of information about who owns and controls companies, and will in addition tackle the abuse of trusts for money laundering?

3) Will he sign ONE’s petition calling for a crackdown on Phantom Firms?

David Cameron is speaking alongside ONE co-founder Bono at Davos on a panel event “The Post-2015 Goals: Inspiring a New Generation to Act,”

Watch the livestream here on Friday 24 January at 12:15 GMT, 13:15 CET, 07:15 ET.

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