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Rules tabled to counter money laundering, terrorism financing risks

The government is continuing its push to ensure that The Bahamas maintains a robust anti-money laundering/countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) regime, with the tabling of rules for the securities industry and financial services providers.

The Financial and Corporate Service Providers (AML/CFT) Rules, 2019 and the Securities Industry (AML/CFT) Amendment Rules, 2019 were tabled in the House of Assembly Wednesday one month after The Bahamas was added to the European Union’s list of jurisdictions having strategic deficiencies in its AML/CFT regime.

The rules for financial services providers call for a risk rating framework which, among other things, is designed to establish know your customer (KYC) and due diligence information requirements.

In addition to requirements stipulating the implementation of internal control procedures for AML/CFT, the rules require the appointment of a compliance officer and a money laundering reporting officer.

The rules also require that financial and corporate service providers develop clear procedures and controls for the verification of a politically exposed person.

The Bahamas was placed on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) watch list in October 2018, when it only satisfied 17 of the FATF’s 40 criteria.

By year-end, The Bahamas was essentially compliant with 30 of the 40 requirements, a record similar to the United States. It is on this basis that the EU blacklisted The Bahamas on its AML/CFT framework.

Other jurisdictions on the list include Afghanistan, American Samoa, Botswana, North Korea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guam, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Puerto Rico, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, U.S. Virgin Islands and Yemen.

Paige McCartney

Business Reporter at The Nassau Guardian
Paige joined The Nassau Guardian in 2010 as a television news reporter and anchor. She has covered countless political and social events that have impacted the lives of Bahamians and changed the trajectory of The Bahamas.
Paige started working as a business reporter in August 2016.
Education: Palm Beach Atlantic University in 2006 with a BA in Radio and Television News
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