Anti-Money Laundering Law in UAE

UAE Anti-Money Laundering Law Registration Deadline is on 30 April 2021

Money laundering is a serious issue for the United Arab Emirates, despite the steps taken by the country’s authorities to combat organized, financial, and terrorist crimes. The UAE has a great Anti Money Laundering (AML) system to protect against the possibility of terrorist financing and money laundering.

Dubai Anti-Money Laundering Regulations

The fight against money laundering in Dubai is primarily based on the federal legislation of the UAE, developed in accordance with the international AML/CFT standards, which are set out in the recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force known as FATF on Money Laundering. Important federal AML regulations in Dubai include:

The anti-money laundering laws apply to companies carrying out the following activities:

  • Accounting and auditing
  • Dealers in precious metals and stones
  • Real estate agents and brokerage firms
  • Company and trust service provision

To comply with the anti-money laundering (AML) and the combating financing of terrorism (CFT), the companies have to register with the Financial Intelligence Unit (on the goAML). They also have to enroll in the Committee for Commodities Subject to Import and Export Control system.

The regulation defines the procedures to be followed to identify individuals and legal entities, the required documents to be submitted, and the rules as to which customer records should be kept on file at the institution. Other provisions of the 24/2000 Regulation require customer records to be retained for at least five years and also require that they be updated periodically while the bank account is made.

On July 29, 2004, the United Arab Emirates strengthened its legal powers to combat financing and terrorism by passing Law No. 1/2004. The law establishes harsh penalties for the crimes covered, including the death penalty and life imprisonment. It also provides for the seizure or confiscation of assets. Under the 2004 law, the leaders of terrorist organizations face life imprisonment. The law also provides for penalties for the illegal import, production, or transportation of “non-traditional weapons” or their parts with the intent to use them in terrorist activities.

Why register on goAML

In July 2013, the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) AML module was changed to Anti Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing, and Sanctions (AML Rules) module. For combating the financing of terrorism and combating money laundering, all companies and businesses need to register with goAML.

Registration with goAML is a prerequisite for submitting Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs). – goAML is an internationally approved electronic system for analyzing and collecting financial and non-financial information for combating the financing of terrorism and combating money laundering.

Registration involves two steps:

  1. Registering in the protection system, i.e., Saudi Arabian Cultural Mission (SACM) on the goAML portal
  2. Registering in the goAML system

Deadlines and Penalties

The final registration date is April 30, 2021. Failure to register is subject to penalties, including revocation of the license. Also, administrative fines for non-compliance with DNFBPs range from AED 50,000 to AED 5 million.

The UAE has strict regulations to help combat money laundering and terrorist activities. The good news is that most of the companies involved comply with AML and CFT laws. Stay in touch with to get top-notch consultancy and guidance to boom your business in UAE.

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