S&Ds gave green light to anti-money-laundering directive
Today, in Brussels, S&D MEPs have backed a European law which will oblige member states to set up public registers which will include detailed information on beneficial ownership of all corporate structures. These registers will help lift the veil on corporate secrecy and greatly facilitate the tracking down of possible money laundering or the financing of terrorist activities.
The vote on the anti-money-laundering directive and the transfer of funds regulation took place in a joint meeting of the committees on economic and monetary affairs, and civil liberties in the European Parliament.
Ana Gomes, Portuguese MEP and S&D Group negotiator on the anti-money-laundering directive, stated:
"Europe is taking a very important step in the fight against corruption, organised crime and terrorism financing. The recent attacks in Paris demonstrate the need to strengthen our means of action at national and European levels.
“The central registers, which the Parliament insisted on, will be crucial to improve the access to data by law enforcement authorities, but also to banks and other obliged entities performing their due diligence.
“Socialists now hope that the European Union and member states will promote this standard abroad, to put an end to tax havens and secrecy jurisdictions".
Peter Simon, German MEP and S&D Group negotiator in the economic and monetary affairs committee, added:
"The public national register will list crucial information on the ultimate ownership of companies, trusts, foundations and holdings.
"Thus, anybody 'with a legitimate interest', such as journalists or investigators, will be able to access this information.
Each year, laundered money globally amounts to 2 – 5% of global GDP."