Mr Sajid Javid – a former financier at Deutsche Bank – says he is looking to save business £10 billion by cutting unnecessary red tape. He believes that efforts to stop money laundering have meant customers being cut off from their bank accounts due to associations with unstable countries or having to go to great lengths to prove their identity.
The business secretary wants firms to tell him where regulation is unclear or its enforcement ineffective.
Having experienced of some of the biggest money laundering trials, this latest development seems a step backwards. Asking banks if they want money laundering rules loosened is like seeking a turkey’s opinion on retaining Christmas.
Rules were introduced to stop instances of banks allowing money laundering. Having defended many people wrongly accused of money laundering, we would rather see a more understanding approach towards such individuals than a further loosening of banking controls.