Brussels has rebuked national governments in the EU for failing to apply rules to implement the Fourth Anti-Money Laundering Directive (4MLD).
Vera Jourova, the EU justice commissioner, has said that as many as 17 EU countries may have failed to put the rules for 4MLD in place on time, despite having more than two years to do so.
Countries are required to set up national registers showing the ultimate “beneficial owners” of companies, which can then be accessed by authorities throughout the EU. The measure intends to make it harder for people to hide assets behind complex corporate structures. 4MLD also imposes greater due-diligence obligations on banks, lawyers and accountants.
Ms Jourova said she had sent letters to 14 countries last week over concerns that they have failed to put the rules on their national statute books. She also sent letters to another three countries where the measures appear to have been only partly implemented.
4MLD was supposed to take full effect across the EU on June 26. Regardless of the shortcomings of individual nations, those covered by 4MLD need to make sure that their workplace practices are fit for purpose when it comes to money laundering prevention.
Read our article: THE FOURTH EU MONEY LAUNDERING DIRECTIVE, WHAT IT MEANS FOR BUSINESS