Colombia’s New Regulatory Framework for Beneficial Ownership: Analysis of Strengths and Weaknesses
Countries around the world are increasingly recognizing the importance of establishing beneficial ownership registries as a means to promote transparency and combat financial crimes. As part of this international trend, Colombia passed beneficial ownership legislation in 2021 and emitted regulations for rollout of the registry in 2022. Global Financial Integrity analyzed Colombia’s new legal and regulatory framework for beneficial ownership and identified five strengths and five weaknesses, as are described in this legal review.
Strengths of the Regulatory Framework:
- The registry will be anchored to the existing Unique Tax Registry (Registro Único Tributario, or “RUT”).
- Mechanisms for updating beneficial ownership information are efficient and digitalized.
- Penalties for non-compliance.
- The 5% threshold.
- Creating an Identification System for Structures that are Not Legal Entities.
Weaknesses of the Regulatory Framework:
- Limited information access, both inside and outside of government.
- Identifying the beneficial owner.
- Reporting responsibilities of foreign-owned companies.
- Lack of clarity surrounding verification.
- Lack of clarity regarding anti-corruption and anti-money laundering applications.
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