A letter, which I sent to the Editor of The Daily Telegraph in reponse to an article on EU anti-money laundering measures, was published this weekend.
In it I responded briefly to allegations that the European Parliament report will call for full transparency of beneficial ownership for trusts and other similar legal arrangements in the UK and across Europe.
The letter read:
SIR - As one of the MEPs steering the EU anti-money laundering legislation through the European Parliament, I would like to clarify concerns about how the law could affect trusts ("EU to force Britons to publish details of wills and property", report, February 9).
We do not intend to require full transparency for trusts. Instead, we are seeking to ensure that trusts do not provide a loophole for criminals. Only those arrangements deemed high risk would have to be made public in some form. The average person should not be affected. We will continue to seek a directive that is unintrusive yet effective in preventing illegal funds from entering Britain and harming our economy.
Timothy Kirkhope MEP (Con)