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Beneficial Ownership

Beneficial ownership transparency has emerged as an important policy tool in countries for combating corruption, stemming illicit financial flows, and fighting tax evasion.

Overview | Recommendations | Partners | Data | Documents | Commitments | Recent Posts

Overview

Anonymous companies are often used to hide corruption. In most countries, disclosure of the individual(s) who ultimately controls or profits from a business is not required. This can result in people using anonymous companies to hide corruption. According to the World Bank, roughly 70 percent of the biggest corruption cases between 1980 and 2010 involved anonymous companies.

As of August 2020 , nearly 30 OGP countries have made commitments to advance global norms on beneficial ownership transparency. 

As part of its peer to peer learning and coalition-building efforts OGP anchored the launch of a global coalition of governments and partners advancing beneficial ownership transparency. This Beneficial Ownership Leadership Group, initiated by the United Kingdom and supported by partners, including Open Ownership, seeks to advance the emerging standards on beneficial ownership through OGP and other platforms.

Armenia, Kenya, Latvia, Mexico, and the Slovak Republic have made formal endorsements to join the Leadership Group. Recently Nigeria also announced its intention to join. 

More recently, OGP has also supported the launch of sub-regional and regional communities of practice on beneficial ownership transparency, including for Latin America, the Western Balkans and the Eastern Partnership . These include members of the Leadership Group to help catalyze the race to the top on this set of reforms.


pre-summit thematic event – graphic

Pre-Summit OGP Thematic Events

Ahead of the 2021 OGP Global Summit and the U.S.-led Summit for Democracy, the OGP Support Unit and partners are hosting a series of thematic events around priority areas, including justice, anti-corruption (beneficial ownership transparency), and gender and inclusion.

Screen Shot 2021-11-17 at 5.05.16 PM

Renewing Democracy – A Decade of OGP

In less than a month, two summits will take place on democracy. The first, the White House Summit for Democracy will deal with global threats including the rise of authoritarianism and feature the voices of...


Recommendations

  • Strengthen disclosure requirements by reinforcing underlying legal and regulatory requirements. As much as $120 billion a year is laundered through London. In response, the UK government created a public register of beneficial owners that is accessed 20,000 times as day.
  • Verify registered informants. Denmark and Slovakia currently have public registries that include steps to confirm the accuracy of the information submitted.
  • Engage citizens to monitor and report improprieties, including enabling citizens to actively use ownership data to uncover networks of corruption. 

Partnerships and Coalitions

Partners

Coalitions


OGP Global Report Data

The data below is drawn from the 2019 OGP Global Report. You can view and learn more about the report here.

These are members making OGP commitments to improve their performance in the respective policy area. As members that have demonstrated political commitment through OGP, the next step is ensuring that implemented commitments have maximal impact.

Key
Indicates that member has a starred commitment in this policy area.


Resources

  1. The New Leadership Playbook

    Nothing about the inherent nature of business dictates that irreversible environmental damage, poor labor standards and conformity in leadership ...

    2021, Outbound Link, Web Page

  2. Actions to Tackle Corruption

    Corruption continues to undermine democratic institutions worldwide. Without strong commitments focused on political integrity, achieving OGP’s partnership-wide goals of economic…

    2021, , Web Page

  3. Recommendations on Women Against Corruption for OGP Action Plans

    Transparency International shares recommendations for governments serious about tackling the impact of corruption on women and ensuring their participation in…

    2020, Outbound Link, Web Page

  4. Transparency of asset and beneficial ownership information

    A paper from Financial Accountability, Transparency and Integrity (FACTI.org)

    2020, Outbound Link, Web Page

  5. Finding the Real Beneficiary - Video

    Watch this video case study that highlights early results from the Slovak Republic's public register on beneficial ownership.

    2019, Perspective, Web Page

  6. Global Report - Beneficial Ownership

    Beneficial ownership transparency has emerged as an essential means for combating corruption, stemming illicit financial flows, and fighting tax evasion.

    2019, Document, PDF

  7. Beneficial Ownership Fact Sheet

    A look at global progress and member-level examples of beneficial ownership work in OGP

    2021, Document, PDF

  8. Where Do We Go From Here? Taking Stock of Beneficial Ownership Transparency

    A few weeks ago, the Government of Georgia hosted the Fifth Open Government Partnership Global Summit in Tbilisi. The event…

    2018, Perspective, Web Page

  9. Advancing Collective Action on Beneficial Ownership

        When a country first joins OGP, and we speak with civil society and government for the first time,…

    2017, Perspective, Web Page

  10. Revealing Who Stands Behind Companies

    Explore EITI’s resources on beneficial ownership disclosure for the oil, gas and mining industries.

    2019, Outbound Link, Web Page

  11. Tales of the Unacceptable

    Read case studies from Global Witness featuring investigations uncovering corruption dealings through anonymous companies.

    2019, Outbound Link, Web Page

  12. Open Ownership’s Implementation Guide

    Explore this guide for practical resources, knowledge sharing, and good practice on beneficial ownership transparency that is being developed by…

    , Outbound Link, Web Page

  13. Privacy or Public Interest? Making the Case for Public Information on Company Ownership

    Learn about the debates surrounding the intersection between data protection and privacy laws and tackling corruption through beneficial ownership registers…

    2019, Outbound Link, Web Page

  14. Data Protection and Privacy in Beneficial Ownership Disclosure

    Open Ownership, The B Team and Engine Room share the rationales and risks for the public disclosure of ownership data.

    2019, Outbound Link, Web Page

  15. Recommendations on Beneficial Ownership for OGP Action Plans

    Read Transparency International’s report for model commitments, best practice for opening registers, and more.

    2018, Outbound Link, Web Page

  16. United Kingdom - Beneficial Ownership

    2018, Document, PDF

  17. Can beneficial ownership transparency really be compatible with data protection?

    In recent years, we’ve seen significant progress on clamping down on the abuse of anonymous company ownership through beneficial ownership…

    2018, Perspective, Web Page

  18. Beneficial Ownership Leadership Group

    The Beneficial Ownership Leadership Group came together in 2019 to drive the global policy shift towards free, open beneficial ownership…

    2020, , Web Page

  19. Beneficial Ownership Transparency for Companies Listed on the Stock Exchange

    Many beneficial ownership registration frameworks fail to obtain beneficial ownership information from listed companies for two main reasons. Tax Justice…

    2020, Outbound Link, Web Page

  20. The Anticorruption Commitment Creator (English)

    Global Integrity, Open Data Charter, ILDA , AODN, and OD4D share four steps to generating OGP open data commitments to…

    2021, Outbound Link, Web Page

  21. El Creador de Compromisos Anti-Corrupción (Español)

    Global Integrity, Open Data Charter, ILDA , AODN, y OD4D comparten cuatro pasos para generar compromisos OGP de datos abiertos…

    2021, Outbound Link, Web Page

  22. Le Créateur d’Engagements Anti-Corruption (Français)

    Global Integrity, Open Data Charter, ILDA , AODN, et OD4D partagent 4 étapes pour générer des engagements OGP de données…

    2021, Outbound Link, Web Page

  23. Beneficial Ownership Data in Procurement

    Open Ownership outlines the main ways beneficial ownership data can improve public procurement processes and objectives and discusses some of…

    2021, Outbound Link, Web Page

  24. Los datos sobre los beneficiarios finales en el contexto de las adquisiciones

    Open Ownership delinea distintos modos en que los datos sobre los beneficiarios finales mejoran los procesos de adquisición pública y…

    2021, Outbound Link, Web Page

  25. Promoting Beneficial Ownership and Integrity Screening in the Mining Sector

    You probably don’t associate open government with the arts very often, but they are more connected than you think. Their…

    2021, Perspective, Web Page


Commitments


Recent Content

pre-summit thematic event – graphic

Pre-Summit OGP Thematic Events

Ahead of the 2021 OGP Global Summit and the U.S.-led Summit for Democracy, the OGP Support Unit and partners are hosting a series of thematic events around priority areas, including justice, anti-corruption (beneficial ownership transparency), and gender and inclusion.

Screen Shot 2021-11-17 at 5.05.16 PM

Renewing Democracy – A Decade of OGP

In less than a month, two summits will take place on democracy. The first, the White House Summit for Democracy will deal with global threats including the rise of authoritarianism and feature the voices of...

blue25

OGP Policy Area Fact Sheets

Explore global progress and member-level examples of open government work in each of the selected policy areas.

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Open Government Partnership