OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – AUGUST 7

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.

https://www.velaw.com/Insights/UK-Publishes-Draft-Regulations-on-EU-Directive-on-Mandatory-Disclosure-Regime/

The consultation is at –

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/draft-regulations-implementation-of-disclosable-arrangements

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.

https://www.livemint.com/money/personal-finance/rbi-to-set-up-central-registry-for-tracking-frauds-in-payment-systems-1565159863289.html

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.

https://isnblog.ethz.ch/conflict/the-conflict-in-and-around-ukraine

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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.

http://www.customstoday.com.pk/drug-suspects-trapped-in-container-call-antwerp-police-for-help/

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.

https://www.lkshields.ie/news-insights/news/sole-traders-branches-and-partnerships-how-do-the-new-beneficial-ownership

PUTIN

https://www.rferl.org/a/the-good-old-days-putin-vs-the-ussr/30095222.html

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.

https://www.brookings.edu/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/Taxing_mobile_transactions.pdf

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.

https://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/british-ports-association-and-port-of-rotterdam-launch-smart-ports-paper/

The paper is available at –

https://connect.portofrotterdam.com/portforward-digital-maturity-bpa

see also –

https://www.portofrotterdam.com/en/port-forward?elqTrackId=cb9444ec7fe444b7ac65ce8e9f112301&elqaid=123&elqat=2

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.

https://www.asianage.com/india/all-india/070819/ed-to-book-rolls-royce-for-money-laundering.html

chartoftheday_18916_value_of_clothes_imported_to_the_eu_n

https://www.statista.com/chart/18916/value-of-clothes-imported-to-the-eu/

chartoftheday_17903_monthly_minimum_wage_in_the_global_garment_industry_n

https://www.statista.com/chart/17903/monthly-minimum-wage-in-the-global-garment-industry/

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.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/flavor-company-reports-potential-bribery-by-company-it-acquired-11565136938

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.

http://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/CBP-8259/CBP-8259.pdf

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.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/travelling-with-a-european-firearms-pass-if-theres-no-brexit-deal/travelling-with-a-european-firearms-pass-if-theres-no-brexit-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.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/precursor-chemicals-wallchart-for-domestic-licensing

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).

https://allafrica.com/stories/201908070578.html

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.

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-abn-amro-results/abn-amro-flags-possible-money-laundering-fines-in-latest-blow-to-shares-idUKKCN1UX0DS

https://www.dutchnews.nl/news/2019/08/dutch-central-bank-tells-banks-to-check-its-retail-clients-for-tax-evasion

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).

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-italy-politics-league-court/italys-top-court-upholds-seizure-of-league-funds-over-corruption-idUSKCN1UX0ZB

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.

https://iclg.com/practice-areas/data-protection-laws-and-regulations/isle-of-man

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.

https://traceinternational.org/bribe_swindle_or_steal

 

This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

 

IRAN CENTRIFUGE MATERIAL SUPPLY NETWORKS

On 6th August, a case study from project Alpha and available on the King’s College London website says that several Chinese aluminium manufacturers have been designated by the US authorities for allegedly supplying dual-use materials to Iran.  If the allegations are true, this would represent a serious violation of the JCPOA.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/100osfroDx_Ce_wWROsMDJPtaOdG2lmE3/view

This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

UK TRADE SANCTIONS ON RUSSIA

On 7th August, amongst a whole range of publications on exports and sanctions to a variety of destinations, the Export Control Joint Unit published this guide.  It details the arms embargo, controls on dual-use items, energy sector sanctions and transit controls.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/trade-sanctions-on-russia

For other guides see –

https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/export-control-organisation

This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

SFO GUIDANCE ON HOW COMPANIES SHOULD CO-OPERATE WITH INVESTIGATORS

The Wall Street Journal on 6th August reported that UK companies looking for lenient treatment by the economic crimes investigator now have a road map — albeit one that comes with few promises.  In its new guidance, the SFO said a company’s co-operation would be taken into account when making charging decisions.  The newspaper says that one potential area of concern for lawyers is the agency’s stance on legal privilege, the guidance reiterating the SFO’s stance that companies seeking co-operation credit should be prepared to waive legal privilege on notes documenting witness interviews.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-k-fraud-agency-strikes-new-tone-with-cooperation-guidance-11565128755

The SFO guidance is available at –

https://www.sfo.gov.uk/download/corporate-co-operation-guidance/?mod=article_inline#

https://www.lawgazette.co.uk/news/sfo-issues-co-operation-guidance-but-firms-still-unsure/5071261.article

This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

 

COURT RULES PATRIOT ACT SUBPOENAS CAN APPLY TO TRANSACTIONS OUTSIDE OF US

On 7th August, KYC 360 reported that a US Court of Appeals decision in respect of a North Korean sanctions case involving 3 Chinese banks says that foreign banks that have US correspondent accounts and are involved in schemes to obtain American currency can be legally obligated to turn over transactional data to federal investigators – even when the payments are processed abroad.

https://www.riskscreen.com/kyc360/news/patriot-act-subpoenas-can-apply-to-transactions-outside-of-us-court-rules/

https://www.cadc.uscourts.gov/internet/opinions.nsf/0/6E2FAD8DB7F6B3568525844E004D7A26/%24file/19-5068-1800815.pdf

This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

OFAC’S SMALL CHANGE WITH A BIG IMPACT

An article from Michael Volkov on 6th August is concerned with a seemingly small change made to OFAC rules on blocked or rejected transactions in June which, it says, greatly expands the reporting requirements and places a potentially large burden on US persons and entities.  Previously, only financial institutions were required to report rejected “funds transfers”, but now any US person who rejects a transaction for any transaction, including goods and services must report this to OFAC.  There is, it says, no guidance on what constitutes a rejected transaction, especially when it comes to internal corporate deliberations.  Reports are required within 10 days of rejection.

https://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/ofac-s-new-501-604-reporting-95121/

This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y

OFAC: AMENDED IRAN SANCTIONS INVOLVING IRON, STEEL, ALUMINIUM AND COPPER

On 6th August, OFAC announced changes to implement Executive Order 13871, “Imposing Sanctions with Respect to the Iron, Steel, Aluminum, and Copper Sectors of Iran”, as well as several new FAQ (see nos. 666 to 690).   The sanctions, provided for in the EO from May, allow for sanctions measures affecting the various sectors and anyone involved in it, including in respect of technical or financial support, transportation etc.  Originally announced in May, the 6th August saw the end of the 90-day “wind down” period for implementation.

https://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/faqs/Sanctions/Pages/faq_iran.aspx#666

https://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/sanctions/Programs/Documents/20190806_iran_metal_regs.pdf

This blog is primarily for my own use, to keep informed and up to date. However, if you would like to say thank you (and perhaps help me get a new, better laptop when I am away…) you can “buy me a coffee” at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y