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Paradise Papers: US Ross says "no impropriety"

Monday, November 06, 2017 - 01:56

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says he's done nothing wrong and did properly disclose his investments in a shipping firm that has significant business ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin's inner circle. As Kate King reports, Ross was responding in media interviews to reports about his investments stemming from the so-called Paradise Papers, a trove of leaked documents about offshore investment that relate to the affairs of wealthy individuals and institutions ranging from Ross to Britain's Queen Elizabeth and trading firm Glencore .

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U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was the special guest at the Conferderation of British Industry's annual conference on Monday. He was there to talk trade...and international relations. But Ross already had the spotlight after reports on Sunday about his investments stemming from the so-called Paradise Papers. (SOUNDBITE) (English) US COMMERCE SECRETARY, WILBUR ROSS, SAYING: "There is no impropriety and if people draw a contrary conclusion, that is because the papers have twisted the story and made it into something that it is not." The Papers are a trove of leaked documents about offshore investment. They relate to the affairs of wealthy individuals and institutions, including Britain's Queen Elizabeth and trading firm Glencore . They were obtained by Germany's Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper and shared with some other media outlets. European Union finance ministers have now added the issue to the agenda of their Tuesday meeting. (SOUNDBITE) (German) HEAD OF CAPITAL MARKETS ANALYSIS AT BAADER BANK, ROBERT HALVER, SAYING: "If, as rumour has it, many famous names are mentioned - this actually shows that even politicians, who should be fighting tax evasion, engage in this practice." Ross says he's disclosed all his investments, including Navigator Holdings which earns millions a year transporting oil and gas for Sibur. The Russian gas company has two major shareholders currently under U.S. sanctions. (SOUNDBITE) (English) US COMMERCE SECRETARY, WILBUR ROSS, SAYING: "Sibur itself was not then sanctioned, is not now sanctioned and never was sanctioned in between. So there is nothing whatsoever improper about Navigator having a relationship with Sibur." But the link may not help his boss. Donald Trump's presidency has been dogged by allegations of Russian collusion.

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Paradise Papers: US Ross says "no impropriety"

Monday, November 06, 2017 - 01:56