HomeNewsBriefBritish Virgin Islands to Increase Financial Transparency
BRIEF

British Virgin Islands to Increase Financial Transparency

MONEY LAUNDERING / 22 AUG 2013 BY MARGUERITE CAWLEY EN

The British Virgin Islands (BVI) has begun talks with the United States over improving financial transparency and reporting requirements for accounts held in the territory by US citizens, a move that could also help tackle money laundering in the Caribbean tax haven.

The United States plans to implement stricter tax evasion measures that require US taxpayers with over $50,000 in foreign holdings to give annual reports on their assets held abroad. BVI Premier Orlando Smith said the British territory was negotiating with the United States over complying with the act through providing information on accounts held by US citizens, reported the Associated Press.

The BVI is a popular location for offshore trusts and the "nominal home" to some 500,000 businesses, as the territory's laws allow businesses based in other parts of the world to register as BVI companies and thus avoid taxes in their home countries.

The Cayman Islands, Bermuda and the Bahamas have all announced plans to comply with the US law as well.

InSight Crime Analysis

Though the law is aimed at regulating US tax payers, increasing reporting requirements and transparency in the Caribbean could also help crack down on drug traffickers who use the islands for money laundering. Lax financial regulations led the US to designate eight Caribbean countries and territories as areas of primary concern for the laundering of drug proceeds in 2012, according to US officials.

The BVI is a major offshore financial center with a large tourist economy, and the United States called it a "major target for drug traffickers" in the most recent International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR). According to the United States, the country does not require the filing of information regarding capital ownership, which "poses significant money laundering risks."

Earlier this year, a project by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) called the "Offshore Leaks Database" exposed corrupt politicians and businessmen from all over the world who used shadowy companies in the BVI, the Cook Islands, Singapore and other offshore jurisdictions for schemes including tax fraud, bribery and illicit enrichment.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

EUROPE CRIME / 17 FEB 2012

Spain's National Court has indicted 52 people for laundering drug money, some of which allegedly helped in financing the FARC,…

ARGENTINA / 7 MAR 2022

Paraguay has launched the biggest operation against cocaine trafficking and money laundering in its history, unleashing a scandal that has…

MONEY LAUNDERING / 16 JUN 2015

US prosecutors say a businessman laundered up to $100 million for Colombian drug trafficking groups by financing Venezuelan companies in…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution Met With Uproar

6 MAY 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime launched its latest investigation, Venezuela’s Cocaine Revolution¸ accompanied by a virtual panel on its findings. The takeaways from this three-year effort, including the fact that Venezuela…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela Drug Trafficking Investigation and InDepth Gender Coverage

29 APR 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime will be publishing The Cocaine Revolution in Venezuela, a groundbreaking investigation into how the Venezuelan government regulates the cocaine trade in the country. An accompanying event,…

THE ORGANIZATION

InDepth Coverage of Juan Orlando Hernández

22 APR 2022

Ever since Juan Orlando Hernández was elected president of Honduras in 2014, InSight Crime has provided coverage of every twist and turn during his rollercoaster time in office, amid growing…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution

15 APR 2022

On May 4th, InSight Crime will publish a groundbreaking investigation on drug trafficking in Venezuela. A product of three years of field research across the country, the study uncovers cocaine production in…

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Widespread Coverage of InSight Crime MS13 Investigation

8 APR 2022

In a joint investigation with La Prensa Gráfica, InSight Crime recently revealed that four of the MS13’s foremost leaders had been quietly released from…