Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the UAE, on Tuesday issued a new decree aimed at strengthening measures to target money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism.
The law recommends the establishment of an independent Financial Information Unit within the Central Bank to receive and investigate all reports submitted by financial institutions and other corporate establishments regarding suspected illicit financial activity.
The unit will also follow up and gather evidence on the transaction in question, and share this information with the relevant law enforcement departments when referring the case for further investigation, a statement said.
Under the provisions of the decree, a committee has also been set up under the chairmanship of the Governor of the Central Bank.
The National Committee to Counter Money Laundering, Combating the Financing of Terrorism and Financing of Illegal Organisations will propose the relevant systems, procedures and policies, the statement added.
Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, deputy ruler of Dubai and Minister of Finance, said: “The UAE’s wise leadership is keen to develop the legislative and legal structure of the nation to ensure compliance with international standards on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism.
"This decree is a fundamental pillar of anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism, and contributes to raising the effectiveness of the legal and institutional framework of the nation to achieve desired results.”
He added: “This law aims to combat money-laundering and to establish a legal framework that supports and strengthens the efforts of the relevant authorities in the nation in countering money-laundering and related crimes. The law also counters financing of terrorist operations and suspicious organisations, which enhances the UAE’s commitment to international recommendations and treaties.”
Some of the articles provided by the law require the declaration of anyone entering or leaving the country carrying cash, monetary or financial bearer instruments, precious metals or stones of value, as per the regulations set out by the Central Bank.
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