Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 20th March 2014.

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Photo of Nigel Dodds Nigel Dodds Shadow Spokesperson (Justice), Shadow Spokesperson (Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs), DUP Westminster Leader

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress he has made in recovering any Ukrainian assets held in the UK that have been improperly acquired.

Photo of David Lidington David Lidington The Minister for Europe

The UK is firmly committed to fighting corruption and rooting out stolen assets. We will work with EU partners to ensure the right EU framework is in place to facilitate asset freezes in full compliance with all existing UK regulation. The UK will not be a safe haven for corruptly acquired funds. Our existing domestic legislation requires businesses to conduct enhanced due diligence in relation to transactions with Politically Exposed Persons, including measures to establish source of wealth and funds, and ongoing monitoring of any business relationship. On Monday 17 March the EU imposed visa bans and asset freezes against 21 individuals in Crimea and Russia in response to Russia's failure to deescalate the crisis and enter into negotiations with Ukraine following the invasion of Crimea. HMG are clear that further measures need to be taken, and the European Council will consider further sanctions, including economic and trade measures, later this week.

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