UBF hosts seminar on the developments and implications of FATF Mutual Evaluation
UAE Banks Federation (UBF), represented by its Compliance Committee, hosted a seminar in association with CCL Academy, a leading organization offering prominent financial institutions training from subject matter experts, under the theme ‘Implications of the upcoming FATF (Financial Action Task Force) Mutual Evaluation & Recent Industry Developments’.
The FATF is an inter-governmental body established by the G-7 Summit, and its objectives are to contribute to national and international efforts in combatting money laundering and terrorism financing by promoting the effective implementation of legal, regulatory, and operational policies.
The seminar, held in Abu Dhabi , was attended by over 100 industry specialists, including Heads of Compliance from UBF member banks, Senior Compliance officers, MLRO’s and Business Heads from UBF member banks.
During the seminar, CCL Academy experts Bruce Viney, Global Head of Financial Crime Compliance; Peter Haines, Global Head of GRC and Clare Curtis, Director, addressed the importance of the FATF Mutual Evaluation, highlighting the step-by-step process that the evaluation entails. Spotting the light on the need to further consolidate Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (AML/CFT) mechanisms, and building on the already existing measures that serve the purpose of combating crime, as part of achieving financial inclusion goal. Discussions also highlighted the ways financial services firms can ensure to achieve best practice in terms of regulation, Anti-Money Laundering (AML), governance, risk and compliance.
The mutual evaluation process requires responding to both technical compliance measures, such as ensuring that FATF recommendations are met, and ‘FATF effectiveness’ measures, by reporting on the effectiveness and adequacy of the implementation of the FATF recommendations. This falls under FATF’s focused approach to produce more effective outcomes that go beyond technical compliance. FATF also encourages the sharing of transparent and objective reports between the involved parties.
H.E AbdulAziz Al Ghurair, Chairman of UAE Banks Federation, said: “The UAE is a member of the Middle East and North Africa Financial Action Task Force (MENAFATF), and this is part of the nation’s ongoing commitment to comply with international standards and best practices related to anti-money laundering and terrorism financing. UBF understands the significance of FATF Mutual Evaluation on the UAE banking sector and the local economy as a whole. Given the increased integration of technology in the banking sector, UBF will remain an advocate of greater transparency and compliance, with an overarching aim to ensure adherence to FATF recommendations.”
The seminar also touched upon the impact of new legislation and regulations, noting UAE latest legislations such as Federal Law no. 20 of 2018 and Cabinet decision no. 10 of 2019. Finally, attendees were briefed on new industry developments, such as cryptocurrencies, as well as the challenges and opportunities they present.