The European Union moved closer to finalizing rules that would expand current anti-money laundering (AML) and customer due diligence (CDD) obligations to new sectors, in addition to granting greater powers to national financial intelligence units (FIUs).
On Thursday, European Parliament and the Council of the European Union finalized a rule package designed to enhance the EU’s toolkit to fight money laundering, terrorist financing, and sanctions evasion. The deal will next move to formal adoption before its changes enter force.
The changes correspond with the provisional approval last month of the creation of a new agency, the Anti-Money Laundering Authority, to supervise high-risk financial institutions across the European Union regarding their AML and countering the financing of terrorism activities.
“This agreement is part and parcel of the EU’s new anti-money laundering system,” said Belgian Finance Minister Vincent Van Peteghem in a council press release. “It will improve the way national systems against money laundering and terrorist financing are organized and work together. This will ensure that fraudsters, organized crime, and terrorists will have no space left for legitimizing their proceeds through the financial system.”
Among the rule package’s requirements would be an expansion of “obliged entities” under current AML regulations to include nearly all crypto asset service providers; traders of luxury goods, including precious metals, precious stones, jewelers, horologists, and goldsmiths; and traders of luxury cars and cultural goods. Businesses in those sectors would be required to verify facts and information about their customers, as well as report suspicious activity.
Crypto service providers would need to apply CDD measures on transactions of 1000 euros (U.S. $1,100) or more.
The package also includes an EU-wide maximum limit of €10,000 (U.S. $11,000) for cash payments; immediate and direct access to financial, administrative, and law enforcement information for FIUs; and clarifications on who is a beneficial owner to better coordinate reporting initiatives, among other measures.