Government responds to Treasury Committee’s Economic Crime report

08 May 2019

Its conclusions included:

  • Companies House needs powers to combat economic crime
  • More precise estimate of the scale of economic crime in the UK needed
  • Government should review UK’s anti-money laundering supervision more frequently
  • UK shouldn’t compromise in fight against economic crime to secure trade deals post-Brexit
  • HMRC should ensure all estate agents are registered with them for AML purposes
  • Wrong for Government to not reform corporate criminal liability framework for economic crime
  • Government should consult widely on any proposed power to block a listing on National Security grounds, given the potential post-Brexit sanctions regime

Chair's comments

The Committee has today published the Government’s response to the report. Commenting on the response, Rt Hon. Nicky Morgan MP, Chair of the Treasury Committee, said:

“I am pleased to see that the Government has listened to the Committee’s conclusions and taken up many of the Committee’s recommendations, in particular, on the ability of Companies House to carry out its duties. The recent announcement of a consultation into the reform of Companies House is timely, and the Government should be ambitious in the new powers and resources that it proposes to provide to this vital component of the UK’s defence against economic crime.

“The Government is currently assessing whether the power to block a stock market listing on national security grounds is necessary. The Committee will follow the Government’s conclusions on this closely.

“It is disappointing that the Government has chosen not to endorse the Committee’s recommendation for the creation of a register of Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs). The reality for many firms is that they lack the resources to identify all those who may be considered to be a PEP. By not endorsing a central register, the Government is making the work of especially smaller firms in preventing economic crime more difficult.

“There are areas where the Government are still to provide their final response, such as on the corporate criminal liability framework, and the Economic Crime Plan. The Committee looks forward to seeing those responses.” 

Further information

Image: House of Lords

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