Finance Ministry involved in shedding light on Panama Papers case

Finance Minister Zdravko Maric said in Zagreb on Tuesday that Croatian anti-money laundering services were in contact with such services abroad and were actively involved in dealing with the Panama Papers case.

"All our services, including the Office for the Prevention of Money Laundering, are connected with services in the European Union and in over 150 countries in the world," Maric told the press on the margins of a conference called "Loans and Economic Growth".

He said that Croatia was actively involved in the case, but would not specify which foreign services Croatia was cooperating with. "All relevant international bodies have so far spoken only in superlatives about Croatian services, including the Office for the Prevention of Money Laundering," Maric said.

Documents leaked from a Panamanian law firm, showing that 140 world leaders, football stars and rich people keep their money in tax havens, have prompted investigations of offshore companies for possible financial wrongdoing.

Commenting on Croatian banks' application for arbitration in Washington over the conversion of CHF-indexed loans, Maric said that the government had its own mechanisms, but that he could not discuss further steps.

"We are aware of the complexity and sensitivity of this issue. The government certainly has its own mechanisms and activities, but at this point we cannot comment on possible further steps. The conversion has been completed and based on that talks will continue with the banks involved and with the European Commission," the minister said.

He would not speculate on what would happen if the Constitutional Court were to decide in the banks' favour, saying only that the government would comply with the court's ruling.

Last update: Tue, 05/04/2016 - 14:10

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