Saturday 17 August 2019

Ministers consider blacklist of firms with out-of-court deals

Finance minister Wopke Hoekstra. Photo: Rijksoverheid

The Dutch government is considering setting up a blacklist of companies which have reached out of court settlements for breaking the law, and excluding them from bidding for state contracts, the Financieele Dagblad said on Tuesday.

In addition, officials from the economic affairs and finance ministers are investigating whether existing contracts with companies which have been fined can be torn up, the paper said.

The FD bases its claims on sources in The Hague and says the proposals are due to be published in the coming weeks.

The plan for a blacklist was developed in the wake of the ING money laundering scandal last year, in which the bank agreed to pay €775m in an out of court settlement, the paper said.

ING is currently the Dutch state bank and opposition parties said at the time it should be stripped of the role. That, however, proved to be impossible given the current regulations.

Rabobank

Meanwhile, the Volkskrant said on Tuesday that Rabobank has been fined €1m for not having proper anti-money laundering controls in place in the period up to 2016.

Central bank inspectors found important information was missing from company files – in particular about the ownership of companies, the Volkskrant said. This meant there was a risk the bank was facilitating money laundering, the paper said.

A spokesman for Rabobank told the paper that the problems have since been tackled.

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