Treasury publishes AML report: The Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and counter terrorist finance (CTF) supervision report for 2013-14 highlights the Government's concerns over the increasingly "broad brush and disproportionate" implementation of banks' legal and regulatory requirements in this area, specifically in terms of extreme derisking policies and treatment of Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs). It criticises the perception that supervisors expect "zero failure" and says this is not the case - supervisors expect to see a risk-based approach that understands and mitigates risks in a proportionate manner. The paper addresses the challenges of Financial Action Task Force (FATF) expectations and preparations for implementation of the fourth Money Laundering Directive (MLD4). It also looks at how supervisors are to prove effectiveness of their techniques. It focuses on several case studies showing how different supervisors have tackled their responsibilities. (Source: Treasury Publishes AML Report)

Treasury publishes MAS report: Treasury has published the independent review report into the Money Advice Service (MAS). The report makes 25 specific recommendations focusing on:

  • measures to improve the effectiveness and reach of debt advice, overseen by a Debt Advice Steering Group of funders and debt advice charities, chaired by MAS;
  • confirmation that MAS should work on behalf of consumers to strengthen the supply of good, accessible consumer financial information and guidance, and should not seek to compete as a public service provider in an already crowded market; and
  • ways in which these consumer benefits could be achieved at lower cost and with greater accountability.

Treasury and MAS have both issued positive responses to the report. (Source: Review of the Money Advice Service)

Serious Crime Act takes effect: s37 Serious Crime Act 2015, providing the legal exemption from civil liability for money laundering disclosures, will take effect on 1 June 2015. (Source: Serious Crime Act 2015 (Commencement No 1) Regulations 2015)

Treasury publishes PSR designations: Treasury has published a number of designation orders bringing various payment systems into the scope of the PSR. The orders cover:

  • CHAPS;
  • Faster payments;
  • LINK;
  • Northern Ireland clearing;
  • Cheque and Credit;
  • Visa; and
  • MasterCard.

The orders specify that the relevant payment system will be regulated by the PSR. (Source: PSR: Designation Orders)

Treasury updates sanctions: Treasury has updated the sanctions lists in respect of Al Qaida and the Ukraine. (Source: Treasury Updates Sanctions)