FILE - Money is seen piled in the back of a car in the Democratic Republic of Congo’s capital Kinshasa.
Lawyers Discuss Illicit Flow of Money from Africa:
June 09, 2014
By: Moki Edwin Kindzeka
African lawyers say they are committed to bringing back money illegally taken out of the continent. During a meeting in Cameroon’s capital Yaounde, former South African President Thabo Mbeki said the hemorrhage of money from Africa makes the continent heavily indebted and highly underdeveloped.
The lawyers say illicit financial flows, amounting to an estimated $50 to $60 billion per year, are carried out through theft and bribery by public officials, corporate transactions, criminal activities, international trade, public procurement and contracting, poorly enforced financial regulations and multi-national financial networks. The African lawyers also say much of the loss cannot be traced.
The president of the Pan-African Lawyers Union, Elijah Banda, told VOA that illegal outflows are no longer only carried out by corrupt African leaders.
"The way we understand financial flows is not people taking boxes of cash across the borders. It is being undertaken in a very serious way in multi-national transactions, transfer pricing between corporations and their sister corporations overseas. Copper based countries that have an extractive industry are very prone to these activities. In Zambia we know that money is leaving the country which should not in form of proper declaration of taxes in form of proper declaration of profits by these multi-nationals. All these become illegal flows," said Banda.