29 March 2018
The Directive (EU) 2015/849 of 20 May 2015, the so-called 4th anti-money laundering directive (4th AML Directive) was enacted on 25 June 2015. With a two-year window for implementation, this Directive was due to be completed by 26 June 2017 at the latest.
While some Member States are still in the process of implementing the 4th AML Directive in their national regulations, other countries (e.g. Germany, England, Sweden, Belgium and Denmark) have already introduced local regulations in this respect.
Because the 4th AML Directive gives certain freedom to the Member States for this implementation, we see a fragmented picture in Europe. Each Member State has its own regime, which doesn’t add up to legal certainty and creates ambiguity.
On 6 March 2018, the House of Representatives in the Netherlands adopted the draft revision Anti-Money Laundering and Anti-Terrorist Financing Act (WWFT 2018). The next step is the Senate, which is scheduled for this April.
Most of the 4th AML Directive will be implemented in bill no. 7128. This bill amends the AML law of 12 November 2004. The Luxembourg parliament has adopted the bill in February and it will become effective after publication. There will be no transition period.
Part of the 4th AML Directive has been implemented via 4 other bills, being:
Complying with new legislation might be easier for certain sectors than others. For example, banks, corporate services providers, and trust companies, they are already used to having certain procedures in place.
But for some sectors this enhanced due diligence is new – and while previously they could get away with the more simplified customer due diligence, they are now also required to professionalize their procedures.
The 4th AML Directive was the most sweeping AML regulation of the EU in years. And while the 4th AML Directive is not even implemented in all Member States, the EU is already discussing it in making it stricter.
And te 5th AML Directive? To be continued…
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