OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – SEPTEMBER 17

17 SEPTEMBER 2022

HAS AGRICULTURAL INCOME BECOME A TOOL FOR MONEY LAUNDERING IN INDIA?

On 17 September, an Opinion piece from the Times of India posed this question, pointing out that agricultural income earned by a taxpayer in India is exempt under the Income Tax Act 1961.  What is more shocking and surprising is that this so-called agricultural income is tax free without any limit.  You can have unlimited amount of agricultural income without paying even a single rupee towards income tax.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/blogs/myview/has-agricultural-income-become-a-tool-for-money-laundering-in-india/

UK: COMPANIES HOUSE CAMPAIGN HIGHLIGHTS DIRECTORS’ RESPONSIBILITIES

On 8 September, ICAEW said that a new campaign aims to educate company directors on their duties and responsibilities as the filing deadline approaches.

https://www.icaew.com/insights/viewpoints-on-the-news/2022/Sept-2022/Companies-House-campaign-highlights-directors-responsibilities

https://www.icaew.com/regulation/membership/icaews-guide-to-directors-responsibilities

UK: NAO GUIDE TO DEMYSTIFY PUBLIC SECTOR CORPORATE FINANCE

On 16 September, ICAEW said that the National Audit Office has distilled analysis of 139 government corporate finance projects conducted over the last 35 years into a best practice guide in a bid to increase the likelihood of future project success.  The guide sets out key questions for senior decision makers to consider when overseeing corporate finance activities in the hope that mistakes of the past will be avoided against a backdrop of intense scrutiny of public funds.

https://www.icaew.com/insights/viewpoints-on-the-news/2022/Sept-2022/NAO-guide-to-demystify-public-sector-corporate-finance

https://www.nao.org.uk/work-in-progress/guide-to-corporate-finance-in-the-public-sector/

THE END OF INDIAN OCEAN PIRACY?

On 15 September, an article from Superyacht News says that, with the removal of the High Risk Zone designation, the author outlines the changing landscape of maritime security.  At 00:01 UTC on 1 January 2023, the Indian Ocean High-Risk Area (HRA) as shown on UKHO Chart Q6099, will be removed. The HRA, originally set up in response to the heightened risk posed by piracy in the region, has stood for well over a decade.  Vessels entering the area were required to adhere to Best Management Practice 5 (BMP5), with many of whom carrying armed security throughout their transit.  The article argues that removal of this definition will undoubtedly serve as a boost to the significant superyacht infrastructure developments currently planned for the Red Sea and Gulf regions. 

https://www.superyachtnews.com/operations/the-end-of-piracy-

THE US SCRUTINISES INVESTMENTS INVOLVING CHINA MORE THAN ANY OTHER COUNTRY

On 9 September, an article from the Petersen Institute for International Economics reported that Chinese investments in the US are far more likely to undergo government scrutiny than those from other countries.  It says that Chinese deals make up 15% of CFIUS reviews but are the source of only 4% of all US mergers and acquisitions.  Japan, South Korea, and Singapore also averaged more reviews relative to investment, but this may indicate that they are investing in more sensitive sectors.

https://www.piie.com/research/piie-charts/united-states-scrutinizes-investments-involving-china-more-any-other-country

NORTH KOREA-RUSSIA TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE

On 14 September, 38 North published an article pointing out that while the vast majority of North Korea’s 1,433-km northern border is shared with China, only a small 17-km stretch borders Russia.  The majority of trade goes from or through China to North Korea rather than Russia.  There is no road bridge between the countries, but there is one of only a handful of international railway routes connecting North Korea to mainland Asia. 

https://www.38north.org/2022/09/spotlight-north-korea-russia-transport-infrastructure/

CHINA RUNS ILLEGAL POLICE OPERATIONS ON FOREIGN SOIL VIA ‘OVERSEAS SERVICE CENTRES’

On 16 September, Radio Free Asia said that China is carrying out illegal, transnational policing operations across 5 continents, targeting overseas critics of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) for harassment, threats against their families back home and “persuasion” techniques to get them to go back, according to a recent report.  It is claimed that Chinese police are currently running at least 54 “overseas police service centres” in foreign countries, some of which work with law enforcement back home to run operations on foreign soil.  One of the key operations the service centres are involved in is the “persuasion to return” process, in which pressure is brought to bear on activists overseas using threats and retaliation against their loved ones back in China.  It is claimed that, between April 2021 and July 2022, 230,000 Chinese nationals were returned to face potential criminal charges in China.

https://www.rfa.org/english/news/china/police-overseas-09162022095838.html

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Author: raytodd2017

Chartered Legal Executive and former senior manager with Isle of Man Customs and Excise, where I was (amongst other things) Sanctions Officer (for UN/EU sanctions), Export Licensing Officer and Manager of the Legal-Library & Collectorate Support Section

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