FSRA announces revisions to its anti-money laundering and sanctions rules and guidance

Friday 22 December 2023 10:50 CET | News

The Financial Services Regulatory Authority has announced updates to its Anti-Money Laundering and Sanctions Rules and Guidance – the AML Rulebook. 

FSRA has recently made updates with a focus on providing clearer guidelines aligned with the UAE's federal regulatory framework to combat money laundering, terrorism financing, and proliferation financing. These revisions emphasise compliance with targeted financial sanctions, specifically refining provisions related to wire transfers to explicitly assert the application of the FATF's 'Travel Rule’ to Virtual Assets.

The Financial Services Regulatory Authority has announced updates to its Anti-Money Laundering and Sanctions Rules and Guidance – the AML Rulebook.

The amendments, which clarify requirements previously outlined in the AML Rulebook, reflect the commitment of the UAE to combating illicit financial activities. These updates are of significance to all entities subject to the AML Rulebook, including authorised firms within the financial services sector and Designated Non-Financial Businesses and Professions. Among the detailed amendments, the revised document now explicitly defines digital assets as a recognised payment method. It states, "The payment for any part or all of the sale/purchase amount includes payment(s) using Virtual Assets." 

Per the official announcement, this move marks an important step in aligning the UAE's financial regulatory landscape with the evolving nature of digital assets, underscoring the authorities' commitment to ensuring a solid and compliant financial ecosystem. The recognition of digital assets as a legitimate payment method demonstrates the FSRA's forward-looking approach in adapting to the changing financial landscape. 

Other recent updates in the UAE 

In December 2023, Beyon Money launched its SuperApp in the UAE, aiming to provide clients with optimised financial services and accelerate its regional expansion. Following this announcement, the company would focus on providing clients and users in the region with access to a range of secure and efficient financial services, as well as digital offerings throughout the local market.  In addition, the company would launch its Personal Financial Management solutions, focusing on enabling customers to link their UAE bank accounts to the application. This will give them the possibility to view all their transactions in one place, as well as access the needed financial insights to observe their spending habits. 

In the same month, Mastercard partnered with UAE-based Further Ventures, a venture-building and investment company, to accelerate next-generation payments and asset management infrastructure. The partnership was announced on the sidelines of the Further Network Summit, part of Abu Dhabi Finance Week, and aims to accelerate the development of local fintech capabilities in the UAE and the wider MENA region. 

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Keywords: AML, compliance, regulation, money laundering
Categories: Fraud & Financial Crime
Countries: United Arab Emirates
This article is part of category

Fraud & Financial Crime

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