TI Netherlands just published a new report entitled ‘Behind The Scenes: Beneficial Ownership Transparency in the Netherlands’. The report, which is available here, demonstrates that the Netherlands has a relatively good understanding of general money laundering risks. However, risks related to ultimate beneficial owners (UBOs) have not yet been sufficiently addressed in neither regulation nor practice. The Netherlands’ score on UBO transparency is weak in international comparison. To meet the international standards for UBO transparency, an adjustment of Dutch regulation will not suffice. It will be necessary to conduct an integral, national risk analysis that concerns specific UBO issues, looks at related future risks and screens the effectiveness of the regulation in practice.
The research report shows that UBO-issues do not get enough attention in current Dutch regulation, policy and practice. The report also finds a significant shortcoming in the fact that the Netherlands has not conducted an integral, national analysis of risks connected to money laundering so far. Another point of critique is the fact that up until this point the problematic position of foreign trusts has been largely ignored by the government, that fraud-sensitive bearer shares still exist in the Netherlands and that Dutch trust service providers can act as nominee directors for their international clients.