Canada now has an international reputation for being the “Maytag of the North”: a place where it is “as easy as pie” for someone to launder their dirty money through anonymous corporations and real estate.
Experts estimate that as much as $100 to $130 billion is laundered through Canada each year and that we fail to catch money launderers 99.9% of the time. This is driving up housing prices, attracting terrorist financing, tax evaders, and other criminals, including fentanyl merchants of death.
It is also hurting our global reputation, as more international headlines paint Canada as a haven for drug and sex traffickers, corrupt foreign government officials and terrorists. Is this what we want to be known for?
Fortunately, there are some straightforward steps we can take to prevent this. Top of the list is establishing a public national registry identifying the real owners of companies, real estate and trusts, so criminals can’t hide behind anonymous corporations.
The BC government is taking steps to address this problem by launching a public inquiry and committing to establish a public registry of the real, or “beneficial” owners, so no one can hide behind an anonymous company.
The federal government and other provinces need to now finally take action by agreeing to establish a pan-Canadian, publicly-accessible registry of beneficial owners.
Please help us send a message to the federal and provincial finance ministers by signing your name to this letter.