Archive for November, 2012

Guernsey amends AML Legislation

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

The Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC) has announced preparing revisions to the regulations and rules governing anti-money laundering (AML) standards for financial services businesses and for prescribed businesses (firms of lawyers, accountants and estate agents) in the jurisdiction. This was done taking into consideration numerous on-site inspections and comments received from the industry.

Amendments are to include:

– The adoption of a more sophisticated approach for firms in risk profiling their customers to take into account international and local developments in best practices in the area.

– The removal of general insurance from the AML regulations and rules.

– Revisions to the “likely to benefit” rules so that, other than in high risk situations, there will be more flexibility for firms in the timing of verification of identity of beneficiaries of trusts falling within the rules.

– A new chapter providing guidance for firms in relation to bribery and corruption, which are of increasing international concern as crimes in their own right as well as motivations for money laundering.

The GFSC said that the revisions would be issued early in 2013. It confirmed that firms would be allowed a transitional period to amend their policies, procedures and controls before the changes come into effect. In some areas no transitional period is needed, such as the removal of general insurance from the detailed requirements for firms.

According to Richard Walker, Director of Policy and International Affairs, “It is crucial that Guernsey’s work in preventing the products and services we offer from being used by money launderers is focused as much as possible, and industry’s efforts put to the best effect possible. The current AML framework has been in place for several years. The experience of both the Commission and industry with it is enabling us to take the positive steps of revising the framework and enhancing its focus.”

Guernsey establishes Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Division

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

As part of its recent drive to achieve operational efficiencies, the Guernsey Financial Services Commission (GFSC) has announced that it is to delegate its supervisory function to a newly-established department – an Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Division.

The creation of an AML Division will enable the GFSC to apply a Commission-wide risk-based approach to money laundering and financial crime surveillance, consistent with the revised international standards published by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).

According to the Commission, licensees will benefit from more efficient on-site visits.

The cost-cutting exercise comes following a government-commissioned report from Ernst and Young, which presented recommendations on streamlining the regulator’s costly operations. There is to be no change in the Commission’s headcount as a result of the change, the Commission confirmed, only a restructuring.