7th August 2019
UK PUBLISHES DRAFT REGULATIONS ON EU DIRECTIVE ON MANDATORY DISCLOSURE REGIME
An article from Vinson & Elkins on 2nd August is concerned with new rules that will operate in addition to the UK’s existing Disclosure of Tax Avoidance Schemes regime (DOTAS) scheme from 1st July 2020 and which will implement an EU Directive regarding the automatic exchange of information in relation to cross-border tax arrangements (aka DAC 6). The draft regulations primarily require “intermediaries” (which will include law firms, accountants and others involved in the design or implementation of the relevant transaction) to provide prescribed information to HMRC, though, in certain circumstances, such as where there is no intermediary or where legal professional privilege applies, the duty to disclose will fall on the taxpayer itself. The firm reports that HMRC has issued a consultation document on the new rules and has invited responses by 11th October 2019, and the final regulations will be enacted by 31st December.
The consultation is at –
RESERVE BANK OF INDIA TO SET UP CENTRAL REGISTRY FOR TRACKING FRAUDS IN PAYMENT SYSTEMS
On 7th August, Livemint reported that the RBI Payment System Vision 2021 envisages a framework for collecting data on frauds in the payment systems with a Central Payment Fraud Registry, and that banks currently report banking frauds to the Central Fraud Monitoring Cell of the RBI. The aggregated fraud data will be published to educate customers on emerging risks, and to operate 24/7.
CONFLICT IN AND AROUND UKRAINE
This graphic concerns the conflict in and around Ukraine, highlighting the territory and border checkpoints not under the control of the Ukrainian government.
DRUG SUSPECTS TRAPPED IN CONTAINER CALL ANTWERP POLICE FOR HELP
On 5th August, Customs News reported that 2 suspected drug traffickers were forced to call the police on themselves after they were locked in stifling heat in a shipping container packed with cocaine at the port of Antwerp, . which is the second largest in Europe. The men, aged 24 and 25, had to make an emergency call after being “trapped” while trying to take possession of the drugs. It took 2 hours for the police to locate the correct container.
IRELAND: HOW DO THE NEW BENEFICIAL OWNERSHIP REGULATIONS AFFECT SOLE TRADERS, BRANCHES AND PARTNERSHIPS?
On 6th August, LK Shields published an article saying that many sole traders, branches and partnerships are now questioning their filing obligations under the new 2019 Regulations. It says that, a sole trader (operating under a specific business name) is not a legal or corporate entity, it does not currently come under the scope of the 2019 Regulations, which only refer to corporate and legal entities who are incorporated in Ireland; and a Branch is not an entity incorporated in Ireland – therefore, branches are not currently required to file.
TAXING MOBILE PHONE TRANSACTIONS: LESSONS FROM KENYA
On 5th August, the US-based Brookings Institute published an article saying that taxation on mobile phone-based transactions and on airtime has been introduced in Kenya and is spreading to other African countries. It says that some countries in sub-Saharan Africa view mobile phones as a booming sub-sector easy to tax due to the increasing turnover of transactions and the formal nature of such transactions by both formal and informal enterprises. In addition to a 2003 excise tax on airtime, since 2013, Kenya has introduced and reworked taxes on goods such as mobile phones, computer hardware, software, and, more recently, retail financial transactions. The paper is said to show that taxation on mobile phone airtime and financial transactions may not expand the tax base significantly but, rather, may reverse the gains on retail electronic payments and financial inclusion; and that the taxation can most affect low-income earners that are sensitive to transaction costs that may discourage the use of mobile phone-based transactions, incentivising them to revert to cash transactions to evade taxes and so less tax revenue.
BRITISH PORTS ASSOCIATION AND PORT OF ROTTERDAM LAUNCH SMART PORTS PAPER
Hellenic Shipping News on 7th August reported on this new paper examining port digitalisation. The paper is said to be part of the BPA Port Futures programme – a thought leadership programme where the BPA teams up with industry partners, innovators and experts.
The paper is available at –
see also –
INDIA: ENFORCEMENT DIRECTORATE TO BOOK ROLLS-ROYCE FOR MONEY LAUNDERING
The Asian Age on 7th August reported that the ED is preparing to initiate its money laundering probe against Rolls Royce and its Indian subsidiary for allegedly paying commission to an agent to win contracts from public sector undertakings, including Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and GAIL.
US: INTERNATIONAL FLAVORS & FRAGRANCES REPORTS POTENTIAL BRIBERY BY COMPANY IT ACQUIRED
On 6th August, the Wall Street Journal reported that the New York-based company disclosed potential bribes in Russia and Ukraine by an Israeli company – Frutarom Industries Ltd – it acquired last year.
REGISTERS OF BENEFICIAL OWNERSHIP
On 7th August, the House of Commons Library published a briefing paper which looks at the development of registers of beneficial ownership in the UK and around the world.
UK: EUROPEAN FIREARMS REQUIREMENTS IF THERE’S NO BREXIT DEAL
On 7th August, the Home Office published updated information on personal firearms movements after Brexit. UK residents who want to travel to the EU with their firearms or shotguns will no longer be able to apply for a European Firearms Pass (EFP) if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
UK PRECURSOR CHEMICALS WALLCHART FOR DOMESTIC LICENSING
On 7th August, the Home Office published an updated wallchart which contains information on the domestic licensing and registration requirements for 3 categories of chemical substances that can be used to manufacture illegal drugs. It also provides information on domestic licensing requirements when using these drugs in the UK or trading them within the EU and beyond.
DIAMONDS ROLE OF PRESIDENT JOAO LOURENCO’S SISTER PUTS SPOTLIGHT BACK ON LOURENCO FAMILY
On 7th August, All Africa reported that the listing of President Joao Lourenco’s sister as a shareholder in Angola’s major diamond company has put the spotlight back on his family’s links to state wealth and punches holes into his proclamation as a proponent of anti-corruption. It says that Edith Sacramento Gonçalves Lourenço Catraio is a shareholder at the Angola Diamond Corporation (Dicorp).
ABN AMRO FLAGS POSSIBLE MONEY LAUNDERING FINES
Reuters on 7th August reported that the Dutch bank has said that it is facing AML fines. The Dutch central bank (DNB) has ordered ABN to review all retail clients in the Netherlands for possible money laundering or other criminal activities, and warned that these investigations could lead to fines for the bank. This follows another Dutch bank, ING, was forced to pay a record $900 million fine in September 2018 for failing to spot criminal activities financed through its accounts.
ITALY’S TOP COURT UPHOLDS SEIZURE OF FUNDS OF GOVERNMENT PARTY OVER CORRUPTION
Reuters on 7th August reported that the top appeals court has confirmed the confiscation of some €49 million from the right-wing ruling League party over a decade-old corruption scandal. It ruled that the case had expired due to the statute of limitations, but the confiscation of the funds remained in place, and the League must repay the €49 million in instalments (over the course of 75 years).
ISLE OF MAN DATA PROTECTION
Available online from ICLG (or to buy to download) is a comprehensive guide to data protection law in the Isle of Man, compiled by two contributors from DQ Advocates.
PODCAST: SNC LAVALIN – SURVIVING A BRIBERY INVESTIGATION AND FOSTERING A CULTURE OF COMPLIANCE
In the latest TRACE podcast, Hentie Dirker, Chief Integrity Officer with SNC Lavalin, speaks to Jonathan Drimmer of Paul Hastings about building a culture of compliance in the aftermath of a bribery scandal. The “Bribe, Swindle or Steal” podcast series explores the world of financial crime – corruption, fraud, money laundering and sanctions, through interviews with investigative reporters, business people and prosecutors, as well as different angles of financial crime and explores what motivates people to break the law, how wrongdoers cover their tracks and what can be done to put a stop to the looting.
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