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New Zealand Publishes AML Regulations

Monday, July 4, 2011

Entities subject to the New Zealand Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009 have two years to be compliant, following the publication of regulations and a commencement order.

New Zealand Justice Minister Simon Power said the two-year period is needed to ensure reporting entities such as financial institutions and casinos have time to prepare for the new system.

The regulations provide exemptions for a range of entities and services, but also prescribe some additional requirements in certain circumstances and extend coverage of the Act to certain types of financial advisers, and trust and company service providers.

“The regime is a vital part of the global fight against organized crime and will enhance our ability to detect and trace illegal money through the financial system, and allow the Police to use the Criminal Proceeds legislation to attack those profits,” Power said.

“The Act aims to ensure that New Zealand is not a safe haven for criminals and tax evaders and that our financial sector continues to be attractive to investors,” he added.

The regime also brings New Zealand more closely in line with Australia by improving compliance with the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) – the inter-governmental body responsible for international standards that combat money laundering and terrorist financing.

“This regime is designed to be proportionate and based on risk, recognizing that effective control of money laundering requires a collaborative approach between industry and government,” said Power.

The Ministry of Justice says that it will continue to work with the supervisory agencies and reporting entities to ensure the objectives of the Act are achieved.

The supervisory agencies – the Reserve Bank, the Financial Markets Authority, and the Department of Internal Affairs – will support industry to implement the regime, and guidance materials are being prepared to assist reporting entities.

The regime comes fully into force on June 30, 2013.