Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes

Global Forum secretariat holds fourth virtual conference on the availability of beneficial ownership information - Focus on Asia-Pacific


25/09/2020 - The fourth virtual conference on the availability of information on beneficial owners of legal entities, arrangements and bank accounts was jointly organised by the Global Forum secretariat and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Held on 23-25 September 2020 and focused on the Asia and Pacific region, the event built upon the Beneficial Ownership Implementation Toolkit produced by the Global Forum and the Inter-American Development Bank, and the Beneficial Ownership e-learning module developed by the Global Forum and the OECD’s Global Relations Programme, in collaboration with ADB.

It brought together about 300 delegates from 36 countries (Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Barbados, Cambodia, Canada, Cook Islands, Cyprus, Eswatini, Georgia, Hong Kong (China), India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Kuwait, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Nauru, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, Singapore, Tanzania, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tunisia, Turkey and United Arab Emirates).

The event aimed at offering practical sessions to discuss the different options for implementing an effective beneficial ownership transparency regime, from a legal and organisational point of view, taking into consideration diverse realities and contexts. More specifically, the virtual conference:

  • facilitated discussions on the definition of beneficial ownership and explained the transparency requirements of the international standards, especially the Global Forum’s standards;

  • enabled exchanges on the various possible legislative and regulatory approaches to ensure the availability of information on beneficial owners;

  • facilitated discussions on the interaction between AML/CFT legislation, tax legislation, company law and other national legislation on the availability of information on beneficial owners;

  • allowed jurisdictions, whose beneficial ownership systems had been found effective by the Global Forum’s peer reviews or which had been assessed by the Global Forum and the FATF on the availability of beneficial ownership information, to share their experience;

  • enabled participating countries to discuss the next steps in the implementation of the transparency of beneficial owners in their respective countries.

During the COVID-19 health crisis, the Global Forum Secretariat continues to work to strengthen the capacity of its members. New virtual workshops will be organised in the coming weeks on different themes related to the exchange of information.

The Global Forum is the leading multilateral body mandated to ensure that jurisdictions around the world adhere to and effectively implement both the standard of transparency and exchange of information on request and the standard of automatic exchange of information. These objectives are achieved through a robust monitoring and peer review process. The Global Forum also runs an extensive technical assistance programme to support its members in implementing the standards and help tax authorities make the best use of cross-border information sharing channels.

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