17:01 GMT +314 December 2019
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    European Parliament and Commission Clash Over Dirty Money, Tax Havens

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    The European Parliament has rejected a blacklist of countries at high-risk of money laundering put forward by the Commission, as it contains no tax havens or even EU countries implicated in the wake of the LuxLeaks, Panama Papers or Bahamas Leaks scandals.

    There has been a long-running standoff between the Commission and the Parliament over the blacklist, which MEPs say merely duplicates the decisions made by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the international forum which deals with money laundering and terrorism financing.

    The latest list comprises, Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iran, Iraq, Laos, North Korea, Syria, Uganda, Vanuatu and Yemen.

    ​Twitter: "The European Parliament wants a better blacklist of tax havens!"

    "If the Commission is serious about tackling money laundering and the crimes it hides, then it must try harder. It is simply not credible for the Commission to produce a list of only ten countries, fewer than even the previous list. The Commission needs to go back to the drawing board and conduct a much more ambitious, thorough and autonomous analysis of which countries are high-risk," said Judith Sargentini, Green co-rapporteur on the anti-money laundering directive.

    "In the light of recent leaks revealing money laundering and tax crimes, it is ridiculous that Panama and other famous havens for dirty money are still not on the Commission's blacklist," Greens MEP Sven Giegold said. 

    However, the conservative groups, the European People's Part y (EPP) and the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) European, abstained from the vote to push the blacklist back to the Commission to include tax havens.

    "A country should be placed on the 'blacklist' only when there is clear evidence of a systematic threat of money laundering and terrorist financing," said center-right Krisjanis Karins (EPP).

    ​"The Greens have today helped defeat the right wing coalition of EPP and ECR, making clear that we expect a much more ambitious approach from the Commission. In light of recent leaks revealing money laundering and tax crimes, it is ridiculous that Panama and other famous havens for dirty money are still not on the Commission's blacklist," said Sven Giegold, financial and economic policy spokesperson of the Greens/EFA group.

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    Tags:
    Bahamas Leaks, LuxLeaks, offshore tax havens, tax avoidance, Panama Papers, tax haven, European Commission, European Parliament, Jean-Claude Juncker, Bahamas, Europe, Panama, Luxembourg, Strasbourg, Brussels
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