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Liberals have been in no hurry to tackle money laundering

Today, the House of Commons debated Bill C-42 An Act to amend the Canada Business Corporations Act and to make consequential and related amendments to other Acts.

Canadians would be surprised to know that – aside from the good reputation our country enjoys on the international scene – Canada is increasingly known as a popular safe haven for criminals to launder and hide their money.

In 2022, Canada ranked 14th on Transparency International’s corruption perceptions index, with a score of 74 out of 100. Canadians should ask why our score is not higher, especially since this problem with lack of transparency has been known for a long time. In 2016, the Panama papers leak exposed the fact that international criminals had been exploiting the gaps in Canada’s corporate beneficial ownership regulatory scheme to engage in corrupt conduct through federally, provincially and territorially administered corporations.

This issue also takes the form of foreigners purchasing, but not living in, housing. This, of course, just makes worse the housing affordability and supply problem in Canada today.

I will support this Liberal Bill, but I think it needs to be more ambitious in addressing the impact of foreign money in our economy and our society. We are perceived internationally as having weak laws regarding money laundering, making us a target for those seeking out weak laws.

Transcript

The official Hansard transcript is here.