Anti-corruption summit delivers underwhelming response to challenge set by Panama Papers

The package of measures announced by governments attending the anti-corruption summit in London today will not stop tax cheats said Oxfam. Politicians from over 40 countries, along with World Bank and IMF representatives, attended the conference.

The anti-corruption summit announced a series of measures by different countries including commitments to set up national registries of the owners of shell companies and commitments to exchange this information. Oxfam welcomed these measures but warned that unless all countries, including tax havens, introduce the same standards on transparency tax dodgers will always find somewhere to hide their money.

Susana Ruiz, Oxfam’s tax expert said:  

“Tax dodgers can still sleep easily tonight. While there were some positive measures announced by governments at the anti-corruption summit today they do not provide the joined up international solution that the problem of global tax abuse demands.  

“Tax abuse is an international business. Unless all governments, including tax havens, commit to a global public register showing who really profits from shell companies - where ever they are based - the corruption and tax dodging revealed by the Panama Papers will continue undisturbed.  

“If governments continue with a piecemeal response people across the world – including some of the world’s poorest people – will pay the price. Tax dodgers are cheating poor countries out of $170 billion in taxes every year. A fraction of this money could fund health services that could save the lives of almost 150 million children.”

Notes to editors: 

London's iconic Trafalgar Square was transformed into a tropical tax haven by Oxfam, Action Aid and Christian Aid today to pressure governments, attending an international anti-corruption summit, to clamp down on tax dodging.

Photos and footage available here: http://wordsandpictures.oxfam.org.uk/?c=21101&k=e04a420bbb

Anti-corruption Summit communique can be found here:  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/anti-corruption-summit-communique

Contact information: 

Anna Ratcliff, anna.ratcliff@oxfaminternational.org, or +44 (0) 7796993288, @Ratcliff_Anna

Mel Kramers, mkramers1@oxfam.org.uk, or +44 (0)7825 088894

For updates, please follow @Oxfam.

Learn more: Inequality, poverty and Panama Papers: the hidden costs of tax injustice

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