CONTINUEThis site uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Find out more.
  1. Front Page
  2. News By Topic
  3. Guernsey Wary Of Publicizing Ownership Information

Guernsey Wary Of Publicizing Ownership Information

by Mike Godfrey, Tax-News.com, Washington

02 May 2014


Guernsey's Chief Minister and the head of Guernsey Finance have responded to UK Prime Minister David Cameron's recent letter calling for the creation of a public registry of beneficial ownership (BO) of Guernsey companies.

In his letter, which was sent to the Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories, Cameron acknowledged the Channel Islands' progress in already having a central registry of beneficial owners, but stressed that it should be made accessible to the public, stating: "I believe that beneficial ownership and public access to a central register is a key to improving the transparency of company ownership and vital to meeting the urgent challenges of illicit finance and tax evasions."

In his response, Guernsey's Chief Minister, Jonathan Le Tocq, said: "The UK Prime Minister's letter of April 22, 2014, accompanies the UK Government's response to the consultation it launched last autumn on beneficial ownership. With regard to the letter, I am pleased that it again acknowledges Guernsey's commitment to the promotion and application of high international standards."

"We are looking at the detail of the UK Government paper in order to see how it might inform thinking on our existing regulatory framework for corporate service providers, and on how we continue to progress our action plan on beneficial ownership, which was published in June 2013."

"Guernsey continues to be supportive of any steps to create a truly global level playing field on transparency issues. I will be responding to the Prime Minister's letter in due course."

Fiona Le Poidevin, Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance, also responded, saying: "We welcome the Prime Minister's recognition of our continued commitment to working with the UK to promote the application of high international standards."

"Indeed, it should be noted that in 1989 Guernsey became one of the first jurisdictions to regulate trust and company service providers and this is something which still does not happen in many territories around the world today, including the UK. In addition, Guernsey has had legislation in place since 2000 that obliges all beneficial owners of Guernsey companies and other legal persons to be properly identified and recorded by regulated corporate service providers, and is one of only a handful of jurisdictions that have such measures in place. However, Guernsey has always maintained client confidentiality and this information is not shared publicly."

"Guernsey is ahead of the curve and we look forward to other jurisdictions stepping up to the mark so that we can help create a level playing field on beneficial ownership. Whether that will include a truly public register remains to be seen given the significant implications, for example in respect of data privacy and human rights as well as the potential negative impact on inward investment for any jurisdictions which adopt measures that are not global in reach," she concluded.

TAGS: Finance | tax | investment | company formation | offshore confidentiality | banking | international financial centres (IFC) | Guernsey | United Kingdom | offshore company formation | offshore | legislation | banking secrecy | standards

To see today's news, click here.

Leave a comment

Read our Posting Guidelines

 






Close

Password Reminder

Please enter your email address to receive a password reminder.

 






Tax-News Reviews

Cyprus Review

A review and forecast of Cyprus's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Cyprus Review »

Malta Review

A review and forecast of Malta's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Malta Review »

Jersey Review

A review and forecast of Jersey's international business, legal and investment climate.

Visit Jersey Review »

Budget Review

A review of the latest budget news and government financial statements from around the world.

Visit Budget Review »



Tax-News+ Updates

Receive FREE daily updates from Tax-News.com, straight to your inbox. Register Now!

For a tailored solution, choose to receive selected news updates for your preferred jurisdictions and topics, with our enhanced Tax-News+ subscriber service. Read more...

 

Stay Updated

Please enter your email address to join the Tax-News.com mailing list. View previous newsletters.

By subscribing to our newsletter service, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.


To manage your mailing list preferences, please click here »