AML/CFT Compliance Services in UAE

Governments across the globe have been taking measures to increase the scrutiny of AML/CFT processes and controls, to fight Financial crimes. Individuals and firms are required to comply with minimum standards; failure to keep up with the changing requirements can lead to penalties and legal consequences.

In December 2020, the UAE Cabinet adopted the formation of the Executive Office of the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism with an aim to follow the international requirements in this sector.

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HLB HAMT - Accounting Firm in UAE

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    HLB HAMT works as a consultant to conduct independent assessments of Anti-money Laundering, Combating the Financing of Terrorism & Sanctions Compliance Frameworks across multiple sectors. Our team of experts can help you in developing, implementing, and enhancing your compliance regime for not only for Exchange Houses, Banking, and Insurance sectors but also for other Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions.


    Anti-Money Laundering Compliance Advisory

    With the continuous changes in the regulatory framework and more stringent AML Rules and regulations, it is becoming difficult for Financial institutions and DNFPBs to implement new regulations and design a complete compliance framework.

    Frequently Asked Questions – AML/ CFT Compliance Services

    1. What are relevant Laws of UAE on AML and CFT?

      Law: Decree 20 of the Federal Law 2018 on countering money laundering offences, combating terrorist financing and financing illegal organizations.

      Executive Resolution: Regulations 10 of 2019 for a decree of federal law No. 20 of 2018 on countering money laundering crimes, combating terrorist financing and financing illegal organizations

    2. What is NAMLCFTC?

      The National Committee for Combating Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism and Illegal Organisations (NAMLCFTC) oversees the national risk assessment process. The UAE identifies and assesses the money laundering and terror financing risks it faces, in line with its obligations under the Financial Action Task Force Standards.

    3. What are the Anti Money Laundering (AML) and Countering Financing of Terrorism (CFT) compliances required in the UAE?

      The AML law mandates the formation of an independent Financial Intelligence Unit (the UAE FIU) within the Central Bank (CBUAE). The purpose of the unit is to obtain Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs) and related details from all Financial Institutions (FIs) and Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions (DNFBPs).

      The AML-CFT Law states that FIs should “identify crime risks within (their) scope of work” and they also have the responsibility to update their risk assessments with regards to the different risk factors. While recognizing, assessing, and understanding the risks of the FIs, their business nature and size must be considered.

      In the case of high-risk identification, enhanced due diligence will have to be conducted and cases wherein low-risk identification is identified, simplified due diligence will do.

    4. What sectors are governed by the UAE Central Bank’s AML / CFT regulations?

      The below-given sectors/ individuals need to comply with the AML/ CFT regulations;

      • Banks, finance companies, exchange houses, money service businesses (including hawaladar or other monetary value transfer services)
      • Insurance companies, agencies, and brokers
      • Securities and commodities brokers, dealers, advisors, investment managers
      • Other financial institutions (FIs)
    5. What are the main elements of the UAE’s AML / CFT regulations?

      All the requirements of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) recommendations of 2012 and its methodology of 2013 are included in the AML Law and AML By-law.

      The minimum statutory obligations of supervised institutions are;

      • To recognize, evaluate ad understand risks
      • Carry out required due diligence work
      • To appoint a compliance officer to fulfill the needs of the relevant Supervisory Authority
      • To ensure that the required management and information systems, internal controls, policies and procedures to mitigate risks are in place
      • To ensure that the indicators to recognize suspicious transactions are in place
      • To maintain adequate records
    6. How does an organization ensure that it is compliant with the UAE’s AML and CFT regulatory requirements?

      Financial Institutions are required to “maintain a risk identification and assessment analysis with its supporting data.” They can make use of diverse models or methodologies to analyze risk, based on the nature and size of their businesses.

      The best option would be to contact a consultancy to ensure you are compliant with the AML/ CFT regulations. HLB HAMT works as a consultant to conduct independent assessments of Anti-money Laundering, Combating the Financing of Terrorism & Sanctions Compliance Frameworks across multiple sectors.

    7. What is Go AML System?

      The go AML system was developed by the United Nations On Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.

      Go AML is an integrated system used by financial information units to receive, analyze and distribute suspicious transaction reports quickly and effectively, and is currently used by a large number of financial information units worldwide, and the UAE is the first Gulf country to implement this modern system

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