European Commission adopts new list of third countries with weak anti-money laundering and #TerroristFinancing regimes

| February 14, 2019

The Commission has adopted its new list of 23 third countries with strategic deficiencies in their anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing frameworks. The aim of this list is to protect the EU financial system by better preventing money laundering and terrorist financing risks. As a result of the listing, banks and other entities covered by EU anti-money laundering rules will be required to apply increased checks (due diligence) on financial operations involving customers and financial institutions from these high-risk third countries to better identify any suspicious money flows.

On the basis of a new methodology, which reflects the stricter criteria of the 5th anti-money laundering directive in force since July 2018, the list has been established following an in-depth analysis.

Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Commissioner Věra Jourová said: “We have established the strongest anti-money laundering standards in the world, but we have to make sure that dirty money from other countries does not find its way to our financial system. Dirty money is the lifeblood of organized crime and terrorism. I invite the countries listed to remedy their deficiencies swiftly. The Commission stands ready to work closely with them to address these issues in our mutual interest.”

The Commission concluded that 23 countries have strategic deficiencies in their anti-money laundering/counter terrorist financing regimes. This includes 12 countries listed by the Financial Action Task Force and 11 additional jurisdictions. Some of the countries listed today are already on the current EU list, which includes 16 countries. The list has been established on the basis of an analysis of 54 priority jurisdictions, which was prepared by the Commission in consultation with the member states and made public on 13 November 2018.

A press release, a Q&A and a factsheet are available online for more information. The press conference by Commissioner Jourová will shortly be available on EbS.

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