Illicit Financial Outflows from Developing World Up 13.7% from 2010

Nearly $6 Trillion Stolen from Developing Countries in Decade between 2002 and 2011

China, Russia, Mexico, Malaysia, India—in Declining Order—are Biggest Exporters of Illicit Capital over Decade; Sub-Saharan Africa Suffers Biggest Illicit Outflows as Percent of GDP

Study Is First GFI Analysis to Incorporate Re-Exporting Data from Hong Kong and First GFI Report to Utilize Disaggregated Trade Data in Methodology

WASHINGTON, DC – Crime, corruption, and tax evasion drained US$946.7 billion from the developing world in 2011, up more than 13.7 percent from 2010—when illicit financial outflows totaled US$832.4 billion.  The findings—which peg cumulative illicit financial outflows from developing countries at US$5.9 trillion between 2002 and 2011—are part of a new study published today by Global Financial Integrity (GFI), a Washington, DC-based research and advocacy organization.

The report, “Illicit Financial Flows from Developing Countries: 2002-2011,” [ PDF | HTML ] is GFI’s 2013 annual update on the amount of money flowing out of developing economies as a result of crime, corruption and tax evasion, and it is the first of GFI’s reports to include data for the year 2011.

“As the world economy sputters along in the wake of the global financial crisis, the illicit underworld is thriving—siphoning more and more money from developing countries each year,” said GFI President Raymond Baker.  “Anonymous shell companies, tax haven secrecy, and trade-based money laundering techniques drained nearly a trillion dollars from the world’s poorest in 2011, at a time when rich and poor nations alike are struggling to spur economic growth.  While global momentum has been building over the past year to curtail this problem, more must be done.  This study should serve as a wake-up call to world leaders: the time to act is now.”

Click here to read full press release.