Businesses need to prepare themselves now for the implementation of the new EU Anti-Money Laundering Directive (the Directive).

The Directive is scheduled to come into force in July 2017, but there are proposals to accelerate the implementation date to 1 January 2017.  HM Treasury has issued a consultation on the implementation of the Directive and will be developing its proposals during Q4 2016.

Initiatives which encourage transparency and reduce the chances of UK structures being used to hide criminality represent an objective shared between the UK Government, the OECD, the FATF and our G8 and EU fellow members. Accordingly, notwithstanding how the UK’s negotiations with the EU institutions and other EU member states may proceed in relation to the UK’s future relationship with the European Union, we must expect that the UK Government will intend to fully implement the expanded money-laundering regime.

From a review of HM Treasury’s implementation consultation it is clear that draft legislation has not yet been prepared. Furthermore, the UK Government has still failed to address how information collected on people with significant control may be used to satisfy the requirement for registers of beneficial ownership.  The UK has shown strong international leadership with the people with significant control regime and it is important that the UK Government now puts in place a workable, efficient and effective regime to equate this to the legal obligation under the Directive.

For further information please contact Edward Craft.