UAE regulators adopt a framework against money laundering for virtual assets

    16 Sep 2021

    Dubai-based UAE’s financial watchdog (NAMLCFTC) has adopted a regulatory framework for virtual assets. Regulators seek coordination among public and private sectors to combat money laundering and terror financing.

    As Gulf News reported, the UAE’s National Committee for Combatting Money-Laundering and Financing of Terrorism and Illegal Organisations (NAMLCFTC) has adopted a regulatory framework for virtual assets at the 8th meeting of NAMLCFTC. The Committee has ordered the UAE Central Bank and the Securities and Commodities Authority to supervise its implementation.

    “This is in addition to enhancing the efforts of the Committee’s individual authorities, ultimately contributing to the UAE’s leading position in fighting money laundering and financing of terrorism,” said Khaled Mohamed Balama, Governor of the CBUAE and Chairman of the NAMLCFTC.

    The NAMLCFTC adopted guidelines to impose targeted financial sanctions, as well as it approved an awareness notice on the implementation of such sanctions. According to the National Action Plan, the Committee also appointed technical studies proposed by the Sub-Committee for Technical Compliance on the legislative framework for confiscation based on non-conviction. It also approved a procedure for identifying and forfeiting the proceeds of money-laundering crimes outside the UAE.

    This framework is the first step in providing all-around regulation of virtual assets and secures the UAE’s financial system and investors from money laundering and terrorist financing risks. All procedures are committed according to recommendation No. 15 of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) International Standards on AML/CFT.

    As reported before, residents of Dubai have lost above AED80 million in crypto scams since the beginning of 2021, revealed Tarek Mohammed, Head of the Digital Assets Crime Section at the Dubai Police GHQ. There have been fixed over 200 cases of crypto scams in the UAE this year.

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