UK sits second in global money laundering rankings

Credas, the leading identity verification service, has revealed that the UK sits second in the list of global money laundering hotspots, with an estimated £88bn laundered each and every year. 

It’s estimated that around the world, the total sum of money laundered on an annual basis equates to as much as 3.0% of global GDP – a huge £1.8trn.

For OECD nations, of which the UK is one, the sum of money laundered is estimated to sit at 1.9% of GDP, although this climbs as high as 6.1% in Belgium, with the UK sitting fourth in the table at 4.3%. 

However, the research by Credas shows that when taking the GDP of each nation into account, the UK jumps to second in the table, with this 4.3% of GDP equating to a huge £87.9bn of money being laundered on an annual basis.

Just one other OECD nation sits above the UK, the United States. It’s thought that while this criminal activity only accounts for 1.4% of the nation’s GDP, this totals a huge £216.5bn across the USA every year, by far the highest sum of all OECD countries.

France (£54.5bn), Germany (£51.3bn) and Canada (£25.6bn) also rank within the top five.

In contrast, Iceland sits at the bottom of the OECD rankings, with just £370m in value followed by Estonia (£703.4m) and Latvia (£750m).

Tim Barnett, CEO of Credas Technologies says: “The practice of money laundering is as old as the hills and it’s one area of criminal activity that is incredibly tricky to eradicate as it can be done in such a vast and varied number of ways. 

It’s also a practice that continues to evolve with the times and in more recent years we’ve seen criminals utilise online banking, cryptocurrencies and, most recently, NFT marketplaces, in order to wash dirty cash.

Prevention is always better than cure and our technology is deployed the length and breadth of the nation and across a multitude of sectors to ensure that businesses are safeguarded against this illegal activity.”

Totals based on OECD money laundering estimates of each nation applied by Credas to the current GDP to find the total value.