King Mohammed VI
- Moroccan nationality or passport
Mohammed VI assumed the throne in 1999 after the death of his father, King Hassan II. He is Morocco’s leading businessman and banker, and the royal family dynasty is the largest private stakeholder in the country’s economy. Forbes reported in 2014 that Mohammed VI is Africa’s wealthiest monarch and among Africa’s richest persons, with a fortune estimated at $2.1 billion.
Mohammed VI became an HSBC client in 2006. According to the bank’s internal files, Morocco’s King was linked to numbered client account “45500MK” served by five bank accounts that together held as much as $9.1 million in 2006/2007. Other family members were also HSBC clients. The leaked files do not specify the exact role that Mohammed VI had in relation to the account.
The King of Morocco did not respond to ICIJ's repeated requests for comment. Following publication of an article by Le Monde, a letter from the king to the newspaper stated: "His Majesty the King is a tax resident of Morocco and pays all necessary taxes as well as those relating to companies of which he is a shareholder. Moreover, the sums held by His Majesty the King in the HSBC account...were transferred [to Switzerland] in full transparency vis-à-vis the Moroccan monetary authorities with the formal prior agreement of the [relevant agency], as required by the applicable Moroccan regulations. This opening of the account was therefore carried out in strict compliance with tax laws and regulations in force." (Information updated Feb. 24, 2015)