Iceland's government revamps after Panama Papers revelations

Iceland's prime minister is set to resign Thursday in the wake of a massive data leak from a Panama-based law firm that suggested he and his wife had an offshore company in a Caribbean tax haven.

Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson's formal resignation takes place at a state council meeting at the president's residence, scheduled to begin at 1400 GMT.

A second meeting would confirm Sigurdur Ingi Johannsson, who until now has been fisheries and agriculture minister, as new prime minister and would also confirm the new cabinet, the president's office told dpa.

Before the meeting with the president, Johannsson and Finance Minister Bjarni Benediktsson are set to face questions in parliament.

Johannsson is deputy leader of the Progressive Party, which has led the government with Benediktsson's Independence Party since 2013.

The two leaders late Wednesday announced the government will remain in office but speed up elections to this autumn.

The governing parties said they wanted to complete more of their work including lifting capital controls that were introduced in 2008 after the North Atlantic country's three main banking groups went under in the financial crisis.

Gunnlaugsson has been under strong pressure to step down after he and his wife were implicated in a massive data leak from Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca.

The data leak details how money was funnelled to shell companies in tax havens and calls into question the finance of numerous politicians, sports stars and celebrities from across 80 countries.

Gunnlaugsson has denied any wrongdoing.

Panama will establish a financial review committee to evaluate the nation's financial and legal practices and promote transparency, the president of the Central American nation said Wednesday.

Mossack Fonseca has rejected any wrongdoing.

Last update: Thu, 07/04/2016 - 12:32
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