The European Banking Authority (“EBA“) has published its response to the European Commission’s Action Plan for a comprehensive Union policy on preventing money laundering and terrorism financing. The Action Plan sets out the Commission’s view of a future anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (“AML/CFT“) framework that promotes the integrity of the EU’s financial system.
In its response, the EBA sets out technical points it feels policy-makers should consider when deciding on the scope and powers of an EU-level supervisor for AML/CFT.
It is of the view that a comprehensive assessment of the current EU AML/CFT framework is necessary and recommends that the Commission:
- harmonise the EU’s legal framework to reduce the risk of gaps created by divergent approaches to incorporating EU AML/CFT law into national law;
- combine an ongoing role for national AML/CFT authorities with an EU-level AML/CFT supervisor in a hub and spoke approach that builds on national AML/CFT authorities’ expertise and resources, and complement this with effective EU-level oversight for a consistent approach with comparable outcomes;
- leverage on the EU’s existing AML/CFT infrastructure, including the EBA’s policy, data and information technology resources as well as the EBA’s European and international supervisory cooperation networks.
The EBA says it will continue to provide technical input as the debate progresses, including on the details of the new supervisory architecture.