Understanding beneficial ownership disclosure

Paul Michael Gilmour

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Beneficial ownership disclosure remains a contentious issue for government regulators, the financial sector, and business professionals. Corporate transparency campaigners and other advocates argue that the proper disclosure of beneficial ownership is crucial to maintaining a fair and strong global financial system. It enhances the transparency of tax affairs and other corporate dealings, and prevents illicit activities, such as money laundering and tax evasion. However, enhanced beneficial ownership transparency relies on an effective system involving accurate company disclosure of beneficial ownership, robust verification procedures, and ongoing monitoring. The process of identifying the real beneficial owner of company assets can also prove onerous and costly for those obligated to carry out proper customer due diligence under anti-money laundering rules. This paper provides an insight into the global efforts to enhance corporate transparency through the disclosure of beneficial ownership. It explores the role of company registers, examines the process of customer due diligence, and considers what the proper disclosure of beneficial ownership means for the regulated financial sector and the business community.
Original languageEnglish
Article number57
Pages (from-to)70-77
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Financial Transformation
Publication statusPublished - 4 May 2023


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