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The upcoming EU action in the field of Anti-Money Laundering

The European Commission is planning to make progress on the Capital Markets Union, the initiative which aims to deepen and further integrate the capital markets of EU member states and the Banking Union initiative to create a safer financial sector for the single market through a single rule book for all financial actors across Europe.

On 2 October 2020, Mairead McGuinness, Commissioner for Financial Services, Financial Stability and Capital Markets, declared that she will take bold measures against money laundering and promised a tougher approach against criminals and has not excluded infringement proceedings against Member States that will not comply with EU anti-money laundering rules. McGuinness and her team are expected to present in the coming months updates on AML legislation, as outlined in the Work Programme of the Commission for 2021.

The European Commission is also expected to propose in 2021:

  • A single EU rulebook;

  • An EU-level supervisor;

  • An EU mechanism to help further coordinate and support the work of Member States' Financial Intelligence Units;

  • A more harmonised set of rules;

  • Legislative proposal on bringing about EU level anti-money laundering (AML) and counter terrorist financing (CTF) supervision.

In particular, the European Banking Authority (EBA) is the agency responsible to build the infrastructure in the EU and to lead, coordinate and monitor AML -CTF supervision.

In the next year the EBA will deliver a number of instruments such as technical standards, guidelines, opinions, advices, and reports on AML and CFT, this work is reflected in the EBA 2021 Annual Work Programme.

Furthermore, the Agency will carry out reviews of competent authorities’ approaches to the supervision of AML requirements across all 27 EU Member States. At the same time the EBA will invest resources in the development of technical standards for the setting up of a central AML database for use by the EBA and national authorities.

In order to provide the EBA with the resources necessary to carry on its duties, the 2021 Draft Budget proposed by the European Commission and agreed by Council determines an important allocation of 1,7 million EUR for AML and CTF activities and of 1,7 million EUR for AML resources.


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