UK Crown Dependencies unite in joint commitment to enhance beneficial ownership transparency
On 13 December 2023, the UK Crown Dependencies (Guernsey, Isle of Man, and Jersey) jointly announced a commitment to enhance transparency and access to information on their registers of beneficial ownership. Building on existing cooperation with international authorities, the commitment expands access to financial services businesses and organisations combatting financial crime.
The decision aligns with global efforts to combat financial crime. Particularly, the joint commitment reflects consideration of recent European court decisions on privacy and data protection issues. While acknowledging the importance of beneficial ownership information, the Crown Dependencies are cautious about public access, focussing on law enforcement, financial institutions, and those with a legitimate interest.
The commitment outlines specific actions, including obliged entity access in 2024 and developing legitimate interest access in line with international standards. The Crown Dependencies aim to present proposals to their parliaments by Q4 2024 and stress their commitment to contributing to global standards in combating financial crime.
In combination with the joint commitment from the Crown Dependencies, the British Virgin Islands and the Cayman Islands have also issued press releases expressing a similar perspective. Our recent blog posts providing detailed information can be accessed here and here.