Adoption of the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive

posted in: EU news

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The European Parliament adopted the fourth Directive on the prevention of the use of the financial system for the purposes of money laundering or terrorist financing on Wednesday 20 May in plenary session. This vote marks the end of the legislative procedure.

The Member States now have two years from publication of the text in the Official Journal of the EU – scheduled for June or July 2015 – to transpose the directive into national law.

The adopted text is available at: http://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/ST-5933-2015-REV-4/en/pdf

It includes the requirement to list the ultimate owners of companies in central registers in EU countries. The registers will be accessible, without any restriction, to the competent authorities and their financial intelligence units. People with a “legitimate interest”, such as investigative journalists or other citizens will also have access to them. A Member State wishing to do so may make these registers public.

The directive also extends the scope of physical and legal persons covered by reducing the threshold from which a payment in cash will need to be subject to particular monitoring from EUR 15,000 to 10,000.

At the same time, the European Parliament adopted the final text of the Regulation on information accompanying transfers of funds, available at: http://data.consilium.europa.eu/doc/document/ST-5932-2015-REV-2/en/pdf

This regulation will be directly applicable in all the EU Member States twenty days after its publication in the Official Journal of the EU.