May 14, 2018

The European Council adopted a directive strengthening EU rules to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing. The directive sets out to close down criminal finance without hindering the normal functioning of payment systems. This directive amends directive 2015/849 and is part of an action plan that was launched after a spate of terrorist attacks in Europe in 2016. This directive shall enter into force on the twentieth day following that of its publication in the Official Journal of the European Union.

The directive was adopted at a meeting of the General Affairs Council, without discussion. This follows an agreement with the European Parliament that was reached in December 2017. The Parliament approved the agreed text on April 19, 2018. The main changes to directive 2015/849 involve:

  • Broadening access to information on beneficial ownership and improving transparency in the ownership of companies and trusts
  • Addressing risks linked to prepaid cards and virtual currencies
  • Cooperation between financial intelligence units
  • Improved checks on transactions involving high-risk third countries

 

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Effective Date: OJ + 20 Days

Keywords: Europe, EU, PMI, Banking, AML/CFT, Directive 2015/849, AML/CFT Directive, GDPR, Data Protection, FinCEN, European Council 

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