Vatican Aims at Transparency in Financial Institution

Paolo Cipriani, Director General of IOR, Speaks Out

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By Sergio Mora

ROME, JUNE 11, 2012 ( The resignation of the president of the Institute of Religious Works (IOR), Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, has led to widespread speculation over what is happening at the institution.

But The Holy See reiterated in a communiqué its intention to achieve greater transparency, a decision that the change at the top of the IOR has not modified in any way.

The communiqué “confirms that the motion of trust adopted, in discussions with professor Gotti Tedeschi on the part of the Council of Superintendence, is founded on motives pertaining to the governance of the Institute, and not determined by an alleged opposition to the line of transparency, which is in fact at the heart of the Authority of the Holy See, as it is for the Institute itself.”

Paolo Cipriani, director general of the IOR, was interviewed by the Italian newspaper, Corriere della Sera, on June 10 about recent events.

Responding to journalist A. Antonietta Calabro’s question about whether the Vatican bank has secret accounts he said: “No, there aren’t nor can there be because all the accounts, which we call ‘positions’ are correlated to a registry of the holder, much more detailed than that used in Italy, for example, and the electronic system cannot function if it’s not absolutely complete.”

“We don’t provide loans, everything that goes out, that is, rebates and even ready money is all traced, even in a more detailed way than in Italy, directly with the use of customs documents, which are consigned to our Control Authority,” Cipriani explained.

“And the money that comes in?”, asked Calabro. “We don’t have branches,” answered the director general of the IOR, hence what comes in is sent by foreign banks, also Italian. It is their responsibility to do the controls, but we also do them, also using systems such as OFAC, which is a constantly updated international list of names of persons suspected of money laundering: if any person is suspect he is immediately blocked.”

In conclusion, Cipriani confirmed that on transparency “abroad there was never a problem, and not even in Italy for many years.”

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