The Treasury Department’s efforts to eliminate regulation loopholes that help enable money laundering in the U.S. financial system will remain a top priority as part of the agency’s 2024 national illicit finance strategy.

The strategy, announced Thursday, includes four priority recommendations, chief among them being the continued operationalization of the Treasury’s previously announced rule changes aimed at improving the country’s anti-money laundering/countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) framework.

The three other priorities are:

  1. Promoting a more effective and risk-focused AML/CFT regulatory and supervisory framework for financial institutions;
  2. Enhancing the operational effectiveness of law enforcement, other government agencies, and international partnerships in combating illicit finance; and
  3. Harnessing innovation to develop new payments technology, support the use of new mechanisms for private sector compliance, and use automation and innovation to find novel ways to combat illicit finance.

The Treasury has been active this year in addressing perceived AML loopholes in the U.S. regulatory system. On Jan. 1, the agency’s beneficial ownership information (BOI) registry took effect, requiring reporting companies to file information about their beneficial owners to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). Those efforts are ongoing, despite a judge’s ruling in March calling the constitutionality of the Corporate Transparency Act—the law that mandated the BOI registry—into question.

In February, FinCEN issued a notice of proposed rulemaking that would categorize registered investment advisers (RIAs) and exempt reporting advisers (ERAs) as financial institutions subject to the Bank Secrecy Act. The agency is working with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which oversees RIAs and ERAs, on additional rulemaking requiring those firms to establish, document, and maintain written customer identification programs.

Also in February, FinCEN issued a notice of proposed rulemaking that would require the handlers of all-cash residential real estate transactions in all U.S. cities and counties to disclose the beneficial owners.

“In this critical moment for our national and economic security, we need to continue to close the pathways that illicit actors seek to exploit for their schemes,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson in a press release. “We recognize the threat illicit financial activity represents to our national security, economic prosperity, and our democratic values and are focused on addressing both the challenges of today and emerging concerns.”

The 2024 strategy includes 15 supporting actions to guide the U.S. government’s efforts regarding the four priority areas, including assessing the need for additional actions to address AML loopholes, considering updates to frameworks for virtual assets activities, and enhancing risk-focused supervision and enforcement.