Updating AML rules
The PMLFT sub-committee is another that has been kept busy during 2018, and will continue to be deeply engaged through 2019. Again, there are a number of strands to the committee’s efforts: the Register of Beneficial Owners (RBO), the updated Implementing Procedures (both Part 1 and Part 2, that is the sector specific guidance), and with the development of Virtual Financial Asset business, the development of AML guidance for practitioners and organisations in the VFA space.
The RBO is now up and running. In putting the rules together, the authorities were able to rely upon the extensive and detailed input from the IFSP, which also pulled in STEP Malta for its contribution on the way beneficial ownership works in trusts. The collaboration continues through 2019, with the IFSP looking to making further suggestions to streamline the regulations and iron out problems with the implementation so far.
The FIAU also issued for consultation its revised Implementing Procedures Part 1, the general IPs applying to all practitioners regardless of line of business. The IFSP’s PMLFT subcommittee, working this time with STEP Malta, the MIA and the Kamra tal-Avvukati, has submitted a detailed response covering a commentary on the published text along with suggestions for improvement and for the avoidance of pitfalls. The definitive version of the IPs is expected to be published over the coming weeks or months. The IFSP is also working on updating the sector specific guidance, Part 2 of the IPS covering corporate service providers and trusts alongside STEP Malta.
The IFSP’s PMLFT sub-committee has also joined the effort to create a robust VFA regulatory regime, and made a substantial contribution towards, first the understanding of how due diligence may work in a VFA environment and on a distributed ledger, and then went on to propose draft AML guidelines for VFA Agents, Issuers, Exchanges and other service providers in the VFA field.
Get involved and informed!
This last – the practice of AML on blockchains and the use of blockchains for AML, is to be discussed during the IFSP’s conference on 25 February. Register to make sure you keep up to date on the way fintech is changing the practice of AML!
Still on the subject of VFAs and AML obligation, the IFSP is holding a course designed primarily to prepare people intending to take on the role of MLRO with a VFA Issuer, to be held on 14 and 18 March 2019. It is, however, suitable for any practitioner who needs to understand how established AML principles and practices fit into the virtual world; sign up for the course if that fits you!