Companies and a wide range of other entities will have to disclose information about their ultimate beneficial owners (UBOs) in a public central register. This UBO register, mandated by the (fourth) EU anti-money laundering directive and intended to prevent abuse of the financial system, will have far-reaching consequences for the privacy of, among others, major shareholders of Dutch public and private limited liability companies (NVs and BVs). Although various organisations in the Netherlands urged that the directive be implemented conservatively for privacy reasons, their plea was to no avail. According to a recent announcement by the Minister of Finance, the Netherlands has opted to make the register accessible to the public instead of only accessible to certain categories such as persons with a legitimate interest (see our previous newsletter on this subject).
Please read more on this topic in our newsletter.