Bermuda, Jersey and other British offshore finance centres would have six months to open their books or face international blacklisting if Labour wins the general election, Labour Leader Ed Miliband has declared.  He obviously does not know that:

1. Jersey has been providing law enforcement & tax authorities around the world with information on beneficial ownership for many years.

2. OECD judges jurisdictions on international standards. Central register is evolving as international standard, that is exactly what Jersey has.

3. Jersey is one of the countries that signed a Multilateral Competent Authority Agreement in Berlin last year becoming a member of the early adopters group.

4. Jersey has had a central registry of beneficial ownership for decades. This is accessible for law enforcement agencies around the world.

The logic of Labour’s policy on a public register of beneficial ownership would be to blacklist the US, Germany, France & 30 other OECD States. The Labour leader would be well advised to seek a further understanding of the benefits that offshore finance centres deliver before ‘firing from the hip’ in a pre-election fit of Political Posturing.

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