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International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
The United Kingdom faces significant money laundering threats from foreign criminal proceeds, owing to its status as a global financial center, but the authorities have a strong understanding of these risks. The authorities estimated the realistic possibility of hundreds of billions of pounds of illicit proceeds being laundered in their jurisdiction. The money laundering risks facing the United Kingdom include illicit proceeds from foreign crimes such as transnational organized crime, overseas corruption, and tax crimes. Financial services, trust, and company service providers (TCSPs), accountancy and legal sectors are high-risk for money laundering, with also significant emerging risks coming from cryptoassets. Some Crown Dependencies (CDs) and British Overseas Territories (BOTs) have featured in U.K. money laundering investigations. Brexit and COVID pandemic have an impact upon the money laundering risks in the United Kingdom. The authorities nevertheless have demonstrated a deep and robust experience in assessing and understanding their ML/TF risks. Leveraging technology tools such as big data and machine learning to analyze cross-border payments may add further dimension to their risk assessments. This technical note (TN) will focus on key aspects of the United Kingdom’s anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) regime: risk-based AML/CFT supervision, entity transparency and international cooperation.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
The Danish authorities’ efforts to strengthen cross-border anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) supervision continue to gather momentum. Since the Fund’s publication of a Selected Issues Paper on this subject in June 20192, the Danish authorities have made significant progress, including by conducting or participating in three multinational on-site inspections of banks; developing a new institutional risk assessment model; issuing an AML/CFT on-site inspection manual; and, via Act No. 1563 (2019), amending several pieces of legislation so as to bolster the monitoring and enforcement powers of the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (DFSA), establish additional reporting requirements for the private sector, and stiffen the penalties for violations of AML/CFT obligations.
Mr. Tanai Khiaonarong and Terry Goh
Financial technology (Fintech) has prompted authorities to consider their potential financial stability benefits, risks, and effective regulation. Recent developments suggest that regulatory approaches and their legal foundations need to augment entity-based regulation with increasing focus on activities and risks as market structure changes. This paper draws on recent international experiences in modernizing legal and regulatory frameworks for payment services. An analytical framework based on a four-step process is proposed—(i) identifying payment activities; (ii) licensing entities and designating systems; (iii) analyzing and managing risks, and (iv) promoting legal certainty. As payment activities evolve and potential systemic risks heighten, adherence to international standards and additional regulatory requirements should be warranted.
International Monetary Fund. European Dept.
This 2020 Article IV Consultation focuses on Malta’s near and medium-term challenges and policy priorities and was prepared before coronavirus disease 2019 became a global pandemic and resulted in unprecedented strains in global trade, commodity and financial markets. Pursuing structural reforms is expected to help sustain Malta’s growth performance while promoting social inclusion. The focus should continue to be on encouraging female and elderly participation in the labor market, upskilling the labor force and stimulating innovation. Moreover, to safeguard the business climate, remaining governance shortcomings should be addressed without delay, including by stepping up the fight against corruption and by increasing the efficiency of the judicial system while ensuring its independence. Improving access to affordable housing remains a key priority in support of greater inclusion. It is imperative to maintain gradual consolidation to ensure a balanced structural budget excluding proceeds from the Individual Investor Program. The IMF staff suggests continuing addressing infrastructure needs while upgrading public investment efficiency. Improve fiscal risk analysis and management.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This technical note examines the implications of fintech for the regulation and supervision of the Singaporean financial services sector. It provides an overview of the financial system with a focus on fintech developments. The note looks at not only fintech developments but also the institutional setup as well as Monetary Authority of Singapore’s (MAS) approach to fintech. The MAS has so far managed to strike the right balance between innovation and safety and soundness. MAS has responded quickly to the challenges of fintech. The impact of fintech on the financial services sector has largely been internalized by financial institutions (FI). FIs are swiftly digitizing and modernizing their systems, products and business models. Because of their market knowledge and higher investment capacities, incumbent FIs are getting better at providing services and products by adopting new technologies or improving existing ones. The note also recommends that it is imperative to develop a cyber network map that considers both financial linkages and Information and Communications Technology connections and use it for cyber risk surveillance.
Mariusz Jarmuzek and Mr. Tonny Lybek
This paper argues that better governance practices can reduce the costs, risks and uncertainty of financial intermediation. Our sample covers high-, middle- and low-income countries before and after the global financial crisis (GFC). We find that net interest margins of banks are lower if various governance indicators are better. More cross-border lending also appears conducive to lower intermediation costs, while the level of capital market development is not significant. The GFC seems not to have had a strong impact except via credit risk. Finally, we estimate the size of potential gains from improved governance.