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ONE calls on Open Government Partnership Summit to stamp out corruption and illegal tax evasion

Paris, the 5th December 5, 2016 – Anti-poverty group ONE is calling on member states of the Open Government Partnership meeting in Paris this week to commit to ‘concrete’ measures to stop corruption holding back development in the world’s poorest countries.

The establishment of public registers of beneficial owners of companies and trusts, plus the implementation of public country-by-country reporting for multinationals in every country in which they operate, would put an end to the secrecy and strengthen citizen participation so as to benefit those who need it most, ONE will tell the ministers and officials from 70 countries attending the OGP Summit.

Adrian Lovett, Chief Executive Officer (interim) of ONE, said: “Developing countries lose a trillion dollars every year due to money laundering, dodgy deals and illegal tax evasion. If these funds could stay in developing countries, some of this money could be taxed, and investing even a slice of these funds in basic health and education services could help fight poverty and preventable diseases.

“The Panama Papers showed us how shell companies are used to launder money on an industrial scale. Only full public transparency will allow citizens in developing countries to ensure anonymous shell companies are not used to launder away much-needed funds to fight extreme poverty.

“Right now there is a live law-making process in Europe – the renegotiation of the Anti-Money Laundering Directive – which could solve this problem. A step back on transparency would be very disappointing – especially as we will mark International Anti-Corruption Day on December 9. Any regression would maintain the status quo and hamper the efforts to fight corruption.

“This Summit is a unique opportunity for key countries negotiating in this process such as France, the UK, and Germany to show their commitment to stop this injustice.”

For all media queries: Charlotte Grignard – +33622410041 – [email protected]
 The OGP Summit provides a platform for multinational companies and governments to make concrete commitments and steps to improve corporate transparency such as beneficial ownership disclosure and country-by-country reporting. The high-level panel Follow the Money: Ending Corporate Secrecy Through Transparency , in partnership with the Open Government Partnership, will bring together multinational companies, governments and CSOs to discuss ways to better improve transparency in business transactions.
The current review of the European Anti-Money Laundering Directive is an opportunity to implement public disclosure of information about beneficial owners of companies and trusts across all EU member states.