Press release | March 28, 2019

Global Witness response to UK golden visa changes

From tomorrow (29 March), changes come into force for the UK Tier 1 (Investor) visa schemes. This follows a review of the programme after the poisoning of Sergei Skripal last year. The scheme was ’suspended’ and then rapidly unsuspended in December last year. Our reaction to the changes implemented tomorrow:

“As of tomorrow, the super-rich who buy UK golden visas will no longer be able to get their £2 million back with interest. Absurdly, this is actually a big step forward, but the Home Office has decided that a detailed audit of new applicants isn’t necessary. Given the intrinsic corruption and money laundering risks with these schemes - and some of the oligarchs, criminals and corrupt elite we know have already used them - the UK’s golden visa programme remains a serious concern.” said Ava Lee, Senior Anti-Corruption Campaigner at Global Witness."

Four years after the UK accidentally failed to do proper checks on applicants to the elite scheme, we're still in the dark about who the government let in. It's time they came clean about what really went on, and how they are going to avoid exposing the UK to these kinds of risks in the future."



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