issues and experts

SFU experts on B.C. government’s decision to hold money laundering inquiry

May 15, 2019

Shradhha Sharma, University Communications and Marketing, 778.782.3035, 

The B.C. government announced today a public inquiry into money laundering that has impacted economy, fueled the overdose crisis and driven up housing prices. The decision comes on the heels of three independent reviews, which concluded that astronomical amounts of money were funneled into the province’s real estate market and other sectors. The inquiry’s scope will include the real estate, gaming, financial institutions, corporate and professional sectors.

The Expert Panel on Money Laundering in Real Estate estimates that more than $7 billion in dirty money was laundered in B.C. in 2018, driving up the cost of buying a home by about five per cent. It added that this figure could be significantly higher—upwards of 20 per cent—in areas like Metro Vancouver where money laundering activity is said to be more prolific.

The following SFU experts are available to comment on today’s announcement:

Andrey Pavlov, Beedie School of Business, 604.763.3696;

“Money laundering is an issue that needs to be addressed. But at a five per cent estimated housing market impact, money laundering cannot explain our housing affordability troubles. Time to stop focusing on demand-side factors and address the main cause for our affordability issues -- regulation and red tape that limit the much-needed new housing supply.”

Others include:

Andy Yan, The City Program, 778.782.5081;

Josh Gordon, School of Public Policy, 604.779.2474;


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As Canada's engaged university, SFU is defined by its dynamic integration of innovative education, cutting-edge research and far-reaching community engagement. SFU was founded more than 50 years ago with a mission to be a different kind of university—to bring an interdisciplinary approach to learning, embrace bold initiatives, and engage with communities near and far. Today, SFU is Canada’s leading comprehensive research university and is ranked one of the top universities in the world. With campuses in British Columbia’s three largest cities – Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey – SFU has eight faculties, delivers almost 150 programs to over 35,000 students, and boasts more than 155,000 alumni in 143 countries around the world.