Anti Money Laundering and Countering Financing Terror Act 2009 – A New Era?

This week lawyer Tom Huang has prepared an article on the Anti Money Laundering and Countering Financing Terror Act 2009, for the purposes of this blog and article the Act will henceforth be referred to as the AML/CFT . Tom examines the impact of the act on legitimate business transactions.Tom-Huang

 To read more about Tom Huang click here. To download the article as a PDF click here.

New Zealand is a part of the international effort to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The AML/CFT Act came into full force on 30 June 2013.

Under the AML/CFT Act reporting entities (like financial institutions and casinos) will have a range of responsibilities including:

  • Developing and maintaining a risk assessment and a risk-based AML/CFT programme;

  • Customer identification and identity verification;

  • Ongoing customer due diligence (CDD);

  • Suspicious transaction reporting (STR);

  • Record keeping; and

  • Meeting audit requirements and annual reporting.

The Act also establishes three statutory supervisors of reporting entities:

  • The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) is the relevant AML/CFT supervisor for banks, life insurers, and non-bank deposit takers;

  • The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) is the relevant AML/CFT supervisor for issuers of securities, trustee companies, future dealers, collective investment schemes, brokers, and financial advisers; and

  • The Department of Internal Affairs is the relevant AML/CFT supervisor for casinos, non-deposit taking lenders, money changers, and other remaining entities.

MoneynzcleanblCasinos and those financial institutions are only for the first phase of the Act. The second phase entities or designated non-financial businesses and professions such as accountants, lawyers, real estate agents and jewelers will all be brought into the regulatory environment in due course.

Therefore, this AML/CFT will have a profound impact not only on businesses, but also on every individual in New Zealand on a daily basis, as the Act requires businesses to collect more specific information from customers to verify their identity and address.

Queen City Law is now setting up a team specifically dealing with AML/CFT Act compliance issues. We will give you updates shortly on what you need to do and how we can help you in respect of compliance with AML/CFT regulations.

If you have any doubts about the impact of the AML/CFT on your business please contact us.