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Cameron leads crackdown on corrupt foreign ownership of UK property

  • 12/05/2016
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Cameron leads crackdown on corrupt foreign ownership of UK property
Overseas companies looking to hold or purchase UK property will be forced to reveal their true identity for the first time, under plans implemented by the government.

In a government bid to clamp down on corrupt activities, the changes will cover companies who already own property in the UK, not just those wishing to buy.

Government figures show that foreign companies own around 100,000 properties in England in Wales, with over 44,000 of these in London.

Prime Minister David Cameron made the announcement as the government hosts an inaugural anti-corruption summit in London, bringing together governments and businesses from around the world with the combined aim of driving out corruption.

A new register for foreign companies will aim to prevent illicit funds from being moved, laundered and hidden through London’s property market, preventing such activities from benefiting from UK public funds.

Speaking on the day of the summit, Cameron said: “A global problem needs a truly global solution. It needs an unprecedented, courageous commitment from world leaders to stand united, to speak into the silence, and to demand change.”

The summit will also see Nigeria, Afghanistan, Italy, Jordan and Argentina commit to taking the initial step towards similar action.

This week, Cameron was caught on camera making embarrassing comments during a conversation with the Queen in which he named Nigeria and Afghanistan as “fantastically corrupt”.

However, speaking to the BBC, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said he agreed with Cameron’s comments about the country, adding that the Prime Minister was “telling the truth”.

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