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19 July 2016 / Michael Cantwell
Issue: 4559 / Categories: Forum & Feedback

New legislation aimed at increasing transparency may encourage secrecy

New transparency rules for UK companies designed to combat tax evasion money laundering and the funding of terrorism and promote the country as a sound business and investment destination may encourage less openness.

The Small Business Enterprise and Employment Act 2015  s 81 introduces the register of people with significant control (PSC). This came into force in April with the aim of clarifying the legal and beneficial ownership of companies. It does this by requiring companies to maintain a register of all people and legal entities (such as other companies) that have a significant interest in them. These include those that:

  • directly or indirectly hold more than 25% of the shares and/or voting rights in a company;
  • have the right to appoint or remove a majority of board directors; and
  • may exert significant influence or control.

The government has...

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