Results 101–120 of 11081 for speaker:Liam Byrne

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 28 - Registered office: appropriate addresses (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: The Minister is being characteristically generous in giving way. The problem the Committee has with the argument about ex post facto regulation is that, if we take the example I gave this morning of the requirement to register persons of significant control, there are still 11,000 companies that have not registered persons of significant control, but there have only been 119 convictions....

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 28 - Registered office: appropriate addresses (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Ms Bardell. I support the amendment, and that tabled by my right hon. Friend the Member for Barking, because in many ways they go to the heart of whether the Minister is serious about stripping economic criminals of their balaclavas and cloaks of anonymity, which currently allow them to perpetrate some of the worst economic crime on the...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 9 - Names for criminal purposes (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: Could the Minister also clarify his target for compliance? I hope it is 100%, but if he could clarify that as well, I would be grateful.

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 2 - Memorandum of association: names to be included (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: I want to reinforce the last point made by my hon. Friend the Member for Feltham and Heston. If we are going to equip the Minister with new powers, it is important that he tells the Committee, at this stage, how he intends to use them. The key question is: what is his deadline for ensuring that every single company on the register has fulfilled the obligations created by these clauses? Can he...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 2 - Memorandum of association: names to be included (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: That is an important point. The Minister is basically telling the Committee that he wants to ensure that the verification checks are proportionate, but across Government—in the Passport Office, the visa service and benefits agencies—there is a well-established infrastructure for verifying identities. If people are applying to become a director or a person of significant control, it is...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 2 - Memorandum of association: names to be included (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: In the light of that remark, will the Minister go further and tell the Committee how he will tackle the problem of shell people if we are unable to get information about them? Shell people is the phenomenon of having what look like foreign nationals or residents of other countries controlling shell companies, which may, in turn, own assets in this country. If it is not possible for us to...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 2 - Memorandum of association: names to be included (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: We might as well pursue this point while we have the time. The 25% threshold is obviously very high, and an amendment will be tabled seeking to lower it. If that does not go through, however, the risk is that there will be members on the register with a significant or even a controlling stake of below 25% in a company, yet we will not know where they are resident or where they live. We are...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 1 - The registrar’s objectives (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: I think this has been a disappointing start to the Committee. Last week in the evidence sessions, I read out the objectives and asked the witnesses what they thought of them. We had anti-corruption organisations there—people who have given their lives to tackling corruption and economic crime—and they were very clear, saying the objectives were too weak and needed to be stronger. I will...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 2 - Memorandum of association: names to be included (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: Let me go back to 1855 for a moment, which is when this House last debated the creation of limited liability companies. It is worth every member of the Committee studying the Hansards of those debates, because the speeches reveal that, when our ancestors in this place made it possible for people to pool together small amounts of capital but nevertheless receive a limit on the liability that...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 1 - The registrar’s objectives (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: My sense is that the Minister will steer clear of specifying the order of magnitude by which we need to increase Companies House resources. That is a disappointment to many of us, but will he therefore advise the Committee how as a House of Commons we best guard against the risk of under-resourcing Companies House once the Bill has reached Royal Assent?

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 1 - The registrar’s objectives (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: This is an important debate, and I think that the Minister’s reply will be, in a sense, a useful “Second Reading” debate on how he will deal with the problem of resourcing. I know that he, as a new Minister, will have spent the weekend reading all of the evidence that we gathered last week. It was very much like an autopsy on the state of economic crime in our country—grisly and...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 1 - The registrar’s objectives (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: The Minister is being characteristically generous in giving way. The point about Danske Bank is that the money was moved through UK corporate structures that should not have been set up in the first place. If we had a stronger verification regime—if we had a stronger set of obligations on Companies House and a better-resourced Companies House—we would surely have run a chance of the crime...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 1 - The registrar’s objectives (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: I suppose we may as well get all the details out now. The estimates for how much extra resource Companies House might need range from three times to 10 times its current level. I was very surprised to hear from Companies House that it was proposing to employ only 100 extra people. That is an increment of about £5 million to £6 million extra, which feels radically short of what is proposed...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Clause 1 - The registrar’s objectives (1 Nov 2022)

Liam Byrne: I join my colleagues in welcoming the Minister to his post, in what is a very welcome appointment, and I apologise to you, Mr Robertson, for being slightly late this morning. Surely the Minister must see that there is a world of difference between action to promote the virtue of something and action to prevent the badness of something. I have been a Minister too. I have created Government...

Public Bill Committee: Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill: Examination of Witness (27 Oct 2022)

Liam Byrne: Jason, you are a political scientist. Why are we in this position where we have such weakness? Why has our political system failed to address these weaknesses for so long?Q


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