DPA - Reports about rampant use of tax havens are a reminder that "tax avoidance is a big global problem," U.S. President Barack Obama said, in his first comments on revelations contained in the so-called Panama Papers.
- Report: U.S. Justice Dept reviewing Panama documents for possible corruption
- Panama Papers: Hundreds of Israeli companies, shareholders listed in leaked documents detailing offshore holdings
- Iceland's prime minister resigns in wake of Panama Papers
He says combating illicit tax havens has been an important topic of international meetings.
"There's always going to be some illicit movement of funds around the world, but we shouldn't make it easy," the U.S. president said. "We shouldn't make it legal to engage in transactions just to avoid taxes."
Obama also defended the effectiveness of U.S. sanctions, saying: "We know the sanctions regime is strong, because Iran wouldn't have, for example, cut a deal to end their nuclear programme in the absence of strong sanctions enforcement."