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News and reports

Global Witness available for comment The first official analysis of the “Kabul Bank Crisis” of 2010 reveals an urgent need for reform in the international banking system, said Global Witness today. The “Report of the... read more
Rosie Sharpe, Senior campaigner, Global Witness Investigations carried out by the Guardian, ICIJ and the BBC's Panorama programme into the ease with which anonymous shell companies can be used to move dirty money... read more
Русская версия здесь Updated 7 December 2012 Maxim Bakiyev appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London today in relation to extradition proceedings filed by the United States regarding an ongoing insider... read more
 Today, HSBC added $800 million to the money it has set aside to cover US fines for money laundering, bringing the total amount that the bank has set aside for this issue to $1.5 billion.  If the fine was of... read more
Click here to read the press release HSBC has bankrolled logging companies causing widespread environmental destruction and human rights abuses in Sarawak, Malaysia, violating its sustainability policies and earning... read more
Read the report Read this report covered in The Economist  简体中文 HSBC has bankrolled logging companies causing widespread environmental destruction and human rights abuses in Sarawak, Malaysia, violating its... read more
Originally posted on the Taskforce on Financial Integrity’s website here. By Rosie Sharp Rosie Sharp is a Senior Campaigner for Global Witness, a member of the Task Force Coordinating Committee. You’re a criminal and... read more
This post first appeared on Freedom House's Freedom at Issue blog.      Corrupt dictators who take bribes and loot their treasuries are rightly condemned by governments and other observers in developed... read more
Read Stefanie Ostfeld's comment piece on The Hill's Congress Blog.  Senate hearing examines money laundering, drug trafficking and terrorist financing allegations According to the chair of a U.S. Senate... read more
The world’s richest countries promised to close the gap between commitments they have made to fight corruption and the implementation of these promises in reality, as part of the leaders communiqué issued yesterday at... read more
пресс-релиз на русском языке доступен тут Global Witness is today revealing evidence that numerous UK companies appear to have helped facilitate a major money laundering scandal centred on a bank in Central Asia. Grave... read more
17.06.2012 | Grave Secrecy
简体中文 (Chinese press release) Совершенно секретно (Russian language version) Өтө жашыруун (Kyrgyz language version) Read the Press Release Grave Secrecy was published in June 2012. It reveals evidence... read more
Obiang Should Tackle Corruption, Poverty, and Repression in Oil-Rich Equatorial Guinea (Washington, DC, June 15, 2012) – The president of Equatorial Guinea should take concrete steps to respect human rights, address... read more
This paper puts forward some ideas for how the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the body that sets the global standards designed to curb financial crime, can ensure that these standards are actually implemented... read more
A new US Department of Justice court filing has made substantial allegations of corruption against Teodorin Obiang, the son of the president of Equatorial Guinea. The document is part of a wider US effort to recover... read more
Obiang Should Tackle Corruption, Poverty, and Repression in Oil-Rich Equatorial Guinea (Washington, DC, June 15, 2012) – The president of Equatorial Guinea should take concrete steps to respect human rights, address... read more
A new US Department of Justice court filing has made substantial allegations of corruption against Teodorin Obiang, the son of the president of Equatorial Guinea. The document is part of a wider US effort to recover... read more
Legislation Enjoys Support of Law Enforcement, Obama Administration; Would Clean-Up American Financial System WASHINGTON, DC – Today, 41 business and civil society groups sent a letter to every member of the U... read more
Global Witness calls for a thorough investigation into HSBC, Barclays, Citibank and Abbey National (now owned by Santander) for their roles in the laundering of millions of pounds by James Ibori, former governor of... read more
Today, the Southern District of New York sentenced Viktor Bout, also known as the Merchant of Death, to 25 years in prison, finally putting an end to his notorious career as a weapons trafficker. In November of last... read more
Global Witness welcomes news that the British regulator, the Financial Services Authority (FSA), has fined Coutts bank for failing to do enough to prevent corrupt funds from flowing through its accounts. “This fine is... read more
Washington DC/ London, February 16, 2012: The Task Force on Financial Integrity and Economic Development (TF) welcomes moves to tackle tax dodging announced by the global body charged with fighting financial crime (... read more
Global Witness applauds Representatives Maloney (D-NY), Frank (D-MA) and Lynch (D-MA) for introducing legislation that would tackle corporate secrecy. If passed into law, the Incorporation Transparency and Law... read more
Three years after the near collapse of the international banking system and as it faces new instability, the governments of the Group of 20 leading economic powers (G20) must focus on the underlying, systemic causes of... read more
Marrakesh - Today 140 governments acknowledged systemic failures in the controls that should stop banks taking dictators’ money, in a move welcomed by anti-corruption campaigners Global Witness and Sherpa. The... read more
Today the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) unsealed an asset forfeiture claim against a $30m Malibu house, a $38.5 million Gulfstream jet and other assets owned by the son of the President of Equatorial Guinea, claiming... read more
The decision by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s executive board on October 4, 2011, to defer any action on a highly controversial life sciences prize named after and funded by... read more
The United States’ dual pledge to implement the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and to support legislation that would stop U.S. states from allowing secretive front companies to be set up represents... read more
Transparency of Libya’s oil wealth must be a key priority of Thursday’s negotiations over the country’s future, said Global Witness today. The meeting, which is to be co-chaired by UK Prime Minister David Cameron and... read more
Unfrozen Libyan assets must be managed in an open and transparent way Read how Libya’s assets can be used to foster peace and drive development With Colonel Gaddafi’s 42 year dictatorship apparently drawing to a close,... read more
At the G8 summit in Northern Ireland, Prime Minister David Cameron committed the UK to creating a central registry of the ultimate - beneficial - owners of all UK companies. He also promised a consultation on whether... read more
French and German versions below. Money launderers, corrupt politicians, terrorists, arms traffickers, drug smugglers, and tax evaders all rely on two things to move their dirty money: company structures that allow them... read more
There have been two cost/benefit analyses carried out looking at the costs of a beneficial ownership registry: one done by the UK in 2002 and one done by the European Commission in 2007. Both concluded that public... read more
Click here to read the press release HSBC has bankrolled logging companies causing widespread environmental destruction and human rights abuses in Sarawak, Malaysia, violating its sustainability policies and earning... read more
17.06.2012 | Grave Secrecy
简体中文 (Chinese press release) Совершенно секретно (Russian language version) Өтө жашыруун (Kyrgyz language version) Read the Press Release Grave Secrecy was published in June 2012. It reveals evidence... read more
This paper puts forward some ideas for how the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the body that sets the global standards designed to curb financial crime, can ensure that these standards are actually implemented... read more
Organisations representing over 1000 civil society groups have written to the EU calling on it to establish a new standard for company ownership transparency. NGO coalitions including Publish What You Pay, the UN... read more
Global Witness' response to an International Development Select Committee Inquiry on Tax and Development. Our response highlights the need for disclosure of revenue payments in the extractive sector and for more... read more
Civil society submission to G20 anti-corruption working group, February 2012 read more
This submission focuses on the role of the financial sector of the British Virgin Islands (BVI) in facilitating a possible loss in value of billions of dollars from state mining assets in the Democratic Republic of... read more
New research published by the Tax Justice Network shows that tax evasion costs 145 countries, representing over 98% of world GDP, more than US$3.1 trillion annually. In the UK for instance, a staggering £69.9 billion a... read more
This submission is in response to the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) consultation, The Review of Standards – Preparation for the 4th Round of Mutual Evaluations: Second public consultation. It follows on from the... read more
Global Witness and a number of other civil society organisations are deeply concerned about the UK government's proposal to water down the anti-money laundering regulations. This submission lays out in detail our... read more
Global Witness, along with over 400 other civil society groups, have written to the G20's anti-corruption working group outlining their priorities for the upcoming Cannes G20 summit. This follows on from a previous... read more
For over a decade, Global Witness has targeted policy-makers, international organisations, regulators and the banks themselves in an effort to make it harder for corrupt politicians to stash loot in foreign bank... read more
Kofi Annan, Chair of the Africa Progress Panel, gave a speech at the Graduate Institute in Geneva last week, which highlighted the benefits of mandatory transparency rules for the hundreds of billions of dollars that... read more
By Porter McConnell - Manager of the Financial Transparency Coalition. When the Task Force on Financial Integrity and Economic Development was created in 2009, only a handful of experts were following the issue of... read more
Britain‘s G8 presidency a chance to reframe the poverty debate It’s always encouraging to see our leaders pushing the right line for a change. Outlining his agenda for the G8 at the World Economic Forum in Davos... read more
Rosie Sharpe, Senior campaigner, Global Witness Investigations carried out by the Guardian, ICIJ and the BBC's Panorama programme into the ease with which anonymous shell companies can be used to move dirty money... read more
Originally posted on the Taskforce on Financial Integrity’s website here. By Rosie Sharp Rosie Sharp is a Senior Campaigner for Global Witness, a member of the Task Force Coordinating Committee. You’re a criminal and... read more
This post first appeared on Freedom House's Freedom at Issue blog.      Corrupt dictators who take bribes and loot their treasuries are rightly condemned by governments and other observers in developed... read more
This article was published in the Financial Times on 24th February 2011. Read press advisory on this issue. Don't make it easier for dictators to steal By Anthea Lawson, head of Kleptocracy campaign The world may... read more
Read this blog on Huffington Post. When governments around the world are taking measures in support of fiscal austerity, foreign assistance is always a prime target for the chopping block. Bravely, some governments,... read more
This piece first ran on the Guardian website. The rich world has been busy tightening its belt in recent weeks, with Britain, Germany and Spain all announcing the severest economic cuts in generations and... read more
Clariden Leu AG, with roots that make it Switzerland's oldest private bank, has begun telling certain U.S. customers suspected of offshore tax evasion that it will disclose their names to the U.S. Internal Revenue... read more
Officials working with Libya's new governing authority are examining whether any payments made by Société Générale SA as part of its business relationship with the Libyan Investment Authority ended up in the hands of... read more
An international financial crime watchdog has been urged not to relax its stance on monitoring political officials in the light of the desperate scramble to freeze the assets of deposed leaders in the Middle East and... read more
Today The Economist came out in support of the campaign “to put a stop to hidden company ownership and to make energy and mining companies disclose more about the payments they make to win concessions.” Global Witness... read more
Rosie Sharpe, Senior campaigner, Global Witness Investigations carried out by the Guardian, ICIJ and the BBC's Panorama programme into the ease with which anonymous shell companies can be used to move dirty money... read more
Rob Walker of the BBC Assignment team investigates what’s happened to billions of dollars in oil revenues paid to the government of Equatorial Guinea since it's oil boom in the 1990s. Anthea Lawson from Global... read more
Global Witness has long campaigned for companies to come clean about who actually owns them. In most countries in the world individuals can legally disguise their identities and their assets behind anonymous shell... read more
This op-ed appeared in the International Herald Tribune The Stolen Money Trail By Anthea Lawson Earlier this month, Swiss bank regulators found that four Swiss banks had not done enough to identify dictators’ assets... read more
The London-based anti-corruption campaign group, Global Witness, said it has evidence that Teodorin Obiang, the Minister of Agriculture and Forestry of the tiny West African state of Equatorial Guinea, has plans to... read more
This article was published in the Financial Times on 24th February 2011. Read press advisory on this issue. Don't make it easier for dictators to steal By Anthea Lawson, head of Kleptocracy campaign The world may... read more
A U.S. diplomat called Equatorial Guinea's dictator of 31 years one of "the good guys" in leaked diplomatic cables urging Washington to engage with its third largest oil supplier or risk endangering energy security,... read more
Kazakhstan's septuagenerian President Nursultan Nazarbayev has brought over 50 businessmen on a three day visit to the EU that is to see the European Investment Bank (EIB) open a €1.5 billion credit line to help fund... read more