Sri Lanka’s new govt. tracing hidden funds in Dubai: Minister

Mar 19, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Cabinet spokesman Rajitha Senarathne said, that the government has information about accounts amounting to two billion US dollars which belong to a “top and important family” in the island.

Senaratne said the government had information of the people who had hidden “billions of dollars” in foreign accounts.
“We have found three accounts which belong to high key personnel in the last regime,” Senaratne told reporters today at a media briefing held in Colombo.

“These accounts are held in the National Bank of Dubai,”

“One account which belongs to a high profile person in the last regime is about 1.064 billion US dollars and 600 million US dollars has been withdrawn from that account just after election,”

Senaratne said, another MP without naming the person, has over a 500 million US dollar account in the same bank.
Also he said, a sectary of a government institution has an account amounting over 500 million US dollars in the same bank which is a joint account with a person who is popular for corruption.

The government earlier said that it will get assistance from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank and Reserve Bank of India to track down wealth hidden abroad due to the lack of skills in the for such skills in the country.

Senaratne says the government has information on an estimated 10 billion US dollars of assets, which was higher than the country’s foreign reserves being held outside the country.

The cabinet of ministers yesterday approved a proposal to establish a special task force to investigate, identify , trace ,seize and transfer the state assets and revenue which have been illegally acquired by Sri Lankan nationals which are being kept outside the territory of the island.

The new task force which comprise locals was set up to find the money which has been illegally or unlawfully acquired or procured by Sri Lankan nationals and other persons acting on behalf of Sri Lankan nationals or otherwise and are being concealed or kept outside the territory of Sri Lanka by such persons and others acting on their behalf and take effective steps to cause their seizure and transfer or return to Sri Lanka to be confiscated and vested in the general treasury.

The proposal was made by President Sirisena.