Open Government Partnership Australia

1.2 - Beneficial ownership transparency


1.2 - Beneficial ownership transparency

This commitment will improve transparency of information of beneficial ownership and control of companies available to relevant authorities. This will assist these authorities to address illegal activities of tax evasion, money laundering, corruption and terrorist financing.

The Financial Action Taskforce (FATF) has developed internationally recognised standards for combating of money laundering and the financing of terrorism. This commitment will progress Australia’s compliance with the relevant standard on beneficial ownership of companies and advance the OGP values of transparency and accountability in business by:

  • improving the effectiveness of our legal, regulatory and institutional frameworks
  • deterring the misuse of corporate structures for illicit purposes such as corruption, tax evasion and money laundering
  • protecting the integrity of the financial system; and
  • increasing growth through private sector investment

Steps to implementation

Implementation Step Period Status

Treasury to release a public consultation paper seeking views on the details, scope and implementation of a beneficial ownership register for companies. The consultation will also consider the use of nominee shareholdings to conceal beneficial ownership

Feb-Apr 2017 Completed

Treasury is continuing to consult with stakeholders on this initiative.

Treasury will provide a recommendation to Government on the details, scope and implementation of a beneficial ownership register for companies (informed by public consultation).

Jul 2017 Completed

Begin work to implement Government decision on transparency of beneficial ownership of companies.

Aug 2017 - expected to continue for the duration of this Plan Delayed

Status updates for commitments are provided approximately every two months. With each update, agencies are encouraged to provide further and better particulars of the commitment and its steps to implementation, which may result in changes to timelines outlined in Australia’s first Open Government National Action Plan 2016-18.

Updated date: 10 July 2020