What is Anti-Money Laundering & Counter-Terrorist Financing (AML/CTF)?

The latest AML/CTF laws in the UAE were introduced through Federal Decree No. 20 of 2018. The proposed law was approved by the cabinet in 2019. The National Committee on AML/CFT has the mandate of overseeing the law implementation under the National Action Task Force. Recently, the UAE Ministry of Economy has announced deadline for concerned UAE entities to be AML/CFT compliant.

The Law aims to develop and implement a legal structure of the nation and ensure compliance with international standards on AML and CFT regulations.

The law aims to achieve the objectives through:

  • Combatting the money laundering practices.
  • Establishing a framework and practices for concerning authorities to combat anti-money laundering and CFT.
  • Countering the Financing of Terrorism activities.
  • Effective measure against suspicious organizations.

Who does it apply to?

AML/CFT laws apply to:

  • Financials Institutions
  • Designated Non Financial Businesses and Professionals (DNFBPs)
  • Brokers and real estate agents
  • Dealers in precious metals and precious stones
  • Lawyers, notaries, and other independent legal professionals and independent accountants
  • Providers of Corporate Services and Trusts
  • Non-Profit Organisations

What needs to be done?

UAE concerned entities must:

  • Understand the risk companies are exposed
  • Develop policies and controls to mitigate the risk
  • Establish Customer Due Diligence process
  • Administration and Reporting
  • Governance
  • Compliance Officer
  • Staff screening and Training
  • Group oversight
  • Independent Audit Function
  • Responsibilities of Senior Management
  • Record Keeping
  • International Financial Sanction

Next Actions Required – 31st March 2021

  • Appoint a Compliance Officer
  • Implement Due Diligence measure
  • Registration on the goAML system and subscribe to the sanction lists
  • Ongoing Monitoring and Suspicious Transactions Reporting (STR)

Deadlines& Penalties

  • Deadline 31st March 2021

Failure to comply may lead to penalties ranging from AED 50,000 to 1 Million and can further include license suspension and/or cancellation.

What services can Creative Zone Tax & Accounting provide?

  • Assessment – Qualify whether a company is a DNFBP
  • Registration on the goAML System and the Sanction Lists
  • Gap Analysis – Identify the required measures and/or policy for AML
  • Training – Train client representative to carry out compliance tasks
  • Outsourced Compliance Officer – End-to-end service including assessment, identify CDD measures, implement relevant measures and policies, training staff and management, carry out ongoing monitoring and reporting requirements.