EU Commission steps up fight against money laundering and terrorist financing- Questions and Answers
The European Commission has today put forward a series of measures designed to further strengthen the EU’s framework to fight against money laundering and terrorist financing:
An Action Plan for a Comprehensive EU policy on Preventing Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing A refined and more transparent methodology to identify high-risk third countries An updated list of high-risk third countries
To ensure inclusive discussions on the development of these policies, the Commission launched a public consultation today on the Action Plan. Authorities, stakeholders and citizens will have until 29 July to provide their feedback.
Action Plan for a Comprehensive EU policy on Preventing Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing
Why is the Commission adopting this Action Plan now?
While current EU rules are far-reaching, and even go beyond international standards, they are not applied in a fully coherent manner across the EU. This leads to fragmentation between Member States. The challenge lies not only with specific pieces of legislation but with how these rules are implemented effectively across the EU. There is a clear need to tackle this lack of coherence and ensure a more harmonised implementation of the rules across the EU.
The recent increase in criminal activities in the context of the Coronavirus pandemic is a reminder that criminals will exploit all possible avenues to pursue their illicit activities to the detriment of society. The EU needs to be equally determined in ensuring that they do not benefit from the proceeds of these crimes.
In July 2019, the Commission adopted an Anti-Money Laundering Communication, which highlighted a number of measures that could be taken to remedy the weaknesses in the EU’s current anti-money laundering rules.
Following this, the European Parliament and the Council invited the Commission to investigate what steps could be taken to achieve a more harmonised set of rules across the EU, including better supervision at an EU level and improved coordination among Member States’ Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs).
Today’s Action Plan is the Commission’s reply to these calls and is a first step towards a new, comprehensive framework to fight money laundering and terrorist financing in the EU.