On 4th October, HMRC, as a supervisor of the Money Laundering, terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017, which came into effect on 26th June 2017, has a duty to publish details of businesses that have been penalised for not complying with the Regulations. This information refers to civil breaches of the regulations and not to criminal offences.
In September, the Eastern and Southern African AML Group (ESAAMLG), the regional FATF-style body, published a mutual evaluation report (MER) on Madagascar. This starts by saying that Madagascar is facing significant money laundering risks related to the importance of certain underlying offences (corruption, tax and customs offences) as well as the natural (natural resource trafficking) and geographical (drug trafficking) characteristics of the island. It is also said to have problems because of judicial corruption; the weakness of state institutions, especially after the 2009 political crisis, and the largely informal nature of the economy and the low banking penetration rate. It does not yet have a national AML/CFT national policy based on a national risk assessment, and implementing one is one of several priority actions recommended by the report.
In September, the Eastern and Southern African AML Group (ESAAMLG), the regional FATF-style body, published a typology report which said that smuggling has become a serious regional concern. The purpose of the report is said to be to identify and highlight the vulnerabilities that cigarette smuggling and associated predicate offences pose to the manifestation of money laundering and financing of terrorism. The report further explores the preventative measures in place, the legal frameworks and role played by Law Enforcement Agencies and FIU in the fight against the laundering of proceeds generated from cigarettes smuggling. One of the report’s conclusions is that understanding of money laundering in the region is poor to moderate. Another, understandable, conclusion is that the varying degree of the level of controls amongst countries probably leads to the countries with weaker controls being used as conduits to circumvent laws in countries with stronger controls.
On 2nd October, the Central Bank of Mauritius published a news release concerned with the mutual evaluation report (MER) from the Eastern and Southern Africa Anti-Money Laundering Group (ESAAMLG), published on 21st September. It says that the report identified areas for improvement in the Bank’s AML/CFT supervisory and regulatory framework, such as, a more documented AML/CFT risk-based framework, separation of the prudential and AML/CFT supervisory frameworks, improvements in legislation enforcement and administrative sanctions for breaches of AML/CFT compliance by licensees. It is said that Mauritius had already started addressing some of the deficiencies identified in the MER, and the news release goes on to details some of the efforts made by the country to meet current FATF standards. These include moves re beneficial ownership, banning of “shell banks” and the carrying out of a risk assessment, including money laundering and terrorism financing risk, prior to the launch or use of new products and new business practices.
The report is at –