UAE, UK host anti-money laundering training sessions

Key institutions from across the UAE benefitted from the skills and knowledge exchange, including the Ministry of Economy, Federal Customs Authority, and the Central Bank…reports Asian Lite News

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MoFAIC) welcomed Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for a series of joint technical training workshops on anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT), held in March and April 2021.

The workshops, hosted by the HRMC’s team of experts, provided an opportunity to share the latest advances in AML/CFT thinking as part of the UAE’s ongoing efforts to raise awareness, build technical expertise, and further strengthen its supervisory system.

Key institutions from across the UAE benefitted from the skills and knowledge exchange, including the Ministry of Economy, Federal Customs Authority, and the Central Bank. The workshops were designed to share the UK Government’s leading approach, experience and latest AML/CFT methods, with a focus on several specific target areas of risk, including: Trade-based money laundering, including the misrepresentation of price, quantity or quality of goods moved through international trade such as in the precious metals sector.

Money Service Businesses (MSBs), including understanding AML/CFT risks in the remittance, currency exchange, and cheque cashing markets.

Money laundering in high-risk sectors such as Trust and Corporate Service Providers (TCSPs), real estate, and high-value dealers.

Information sharing, including the planning and preparation for open-source and other detailed cross-government investigations.

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Amna Fikri, Director of the Economic and Trade Affairs Department, UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said, “We are pleased to partner with HMRC to lead these technical workshops covering a number of important AML/CFT subject areas. This robust knowledge exchange will support and better bolster the UAE’s capabilities in effectively addressing financial crime issues and to assist in building a stronger and more sustainable financial ecosystem.”

Simon York, Director and Chief Investigation Officer of Fraud Investigation Service, HMRC said, “Money laundering and criminal financing are an international problem that requires international cooperation. The United Kingdom is not the only country facing these threats and that is why we work closely with international partners like the UAE to share our skills, experience, and understanding to address these important issues.”

The joint training sessions hosted with the United Kingdom form a key part of the UAE’s wide range of activities to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing, including initiatives to facilitate international and domestic cooperation.

In February 2021, the UAE launched the Executive Office on AML/CFT, which serves as the primary national coordinating body on AML/CFT efforts within the UAE and holds a wide-ranging mandate to assist the relevant authorities in addressing the country’s National Action Plan. The Executive Office’s overarching objective is to enable and equip both the public and private sectors in the UAE in building a strong and sustainable AML/CFT structure in the country, including working with MoFAIC to facilitate cooperation and coordination with the international community.

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