31 August 2017

South Africa: Parliament - MPs Frustrated By Lack of Action On Illicit Financial Flows

analysis

It's as clear as mud what exactly South Africa's law enforcement and regulatory authorities are doing to fight illicit financial outflows, including moving profits out of the country without official permission to minimise domestic tax obligations. On Wednesday the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) told MPs it had referred 110 new cases for investigation to law enforcement agencies since March 2017, while the Hawks talked of 58 cases from previous referrals - and National Treasury highlighted lack of progress in that there has not yet been a single conviction related to illicit financial flows. By MARIANNE MERTEN.

Illicit financial flows (IFFs), which are estimated to have cost South Africa $122-billion between 2003 and 2012, are not a recent topic at Parliament. A joint meeting similar to Wednesday's was held in September 2015, where responsible agencies had pledged action.

But there was a touch of defensiveness when the Hawks began their presentation to Wednesday's joint meeting of the committees of finance, trade and industry, police and mineral resources. "Some matters were referred to us by the Reserve Bank. Safely to confirm these matters are on our books," said Hawks acting priority crimes head Brigadier Mokgadi Bokaba.

It was a direct reference...

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