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Money laundering attractiveness

A recent study from the Netherland shows the new rank order of attractiveness for all of the countries in the world. For the most part, these scores are logical and make sense.

The Tierce is :

Luxembourg 55,4
Switzerland 25.7
Liechtenstein 21-20

The higher the score, the greater attractiveness to money launderers.

The ABBL (The Luxembourg Bankers' Association ) issued a press release late March 2006 that was called "Dubious report on money laundering: the ABBL responds" to regret that the Dutch study entitled “The amounts and effects of money laundering” describes Luxembourg as the world champion on the “Attractiveness index for money laundering. This press release is no longer available on the press releases list.


Text from the ABBL :

Press release
29 March 2006
Dubious report on money laundering: the ABBL responds

The Dutch study entitled “The amounts and effects of money laundering” describes Luxembourg as the worldchampion on the “Attractiveness index for money laundering”.On 21 February 2006, the ABBL already registered a protest with the Finance Minister of the Netherlands,who had commissioned this report, against the gratuitous statements made in this document and its lack ofprofessionalism.

The ABBL deplores the fact that, behind a pseudo-scientific façade, this document calls into question thereputation and standards of the Luxembourg Financial Centre in general and of its members in particular.Luxembourg is a long-standing member of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Its efforts to preventmoney laundering have recently been highlighted by international organisations, such as the InternationalMonetary Fund (IMF). Luxembourg was one of the first countries to impose penalties for money launderingand currently applies particularly stringent laws and practices in this area.

The ABBL has serious doubts about the methods used to draw up the study. Although it has been written byan academic institution, the conclusions do not reflect a serious scientific approach.

The assessment is arrived at using a formula with several variables. One key multiplier is GDP per capita,often regarded as an indicator of the “wealth” of a country and of its inhabitants. On that assumption, thericher a country is, the more “laundering” takes place there. Moreover, for the comparison to be pertinent inthis particular context, allowance would at least have had to be made for non-resident cross-border labourwhich represents 40% of total employment in the Luxembourg economy.

In its letter to the Netherlands Finance Minister, the ABBL particularly regretted the fact that a study of lowscientific value, which is prejudicial to Luxembourg and to its Financial Centre, should have beencommissioned by a long-standing political partner.

Contact: Fernand Grulms
59 boulevard Royal • BP13 L-2010 Luxembourg
Tel.: (+352) 46 36 60-1 • Fax: (+352) 46 09 21
mail@abbl.lu • www.abbl.lu • www.lff.lu

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