Plans to introduce laws in Britain to combat money laundering could prevent the media and researchers from accessing vital information on the tide of dirty cash flowing around the world, campaigners and journalists have warned.
An open letter to the foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, has about 80 signatories including the son of the murdered anti-corruption reporter Daphne Caruana Galizia and journalists from the Guardian, Times and BBC.
They say the government’s approach to a new register of beneficiaries of obscure financial structures risks undermining previous efforts to combat illicit financial flows.
The register is being updated as a result of the passage of the fifth anti-money laundering directive (5MLD), passed by the EU after the Panama Papers revelations, which were reported by an international collaboration of news organisations including the Guardian.
Proposals published by the Treasury this year say journalists and researchers will have