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The EU’s new anti-money laundering package aims to create a more consistent regulatory framework and will benefit online gambling operators by standardising AML rules and reporting requirements across member states.

Brussels, 24 April 2024 – The European Parliament has approved the EU’s new anti-money laundering (AML) package at its plenary sitting today, marking a significant milestone towards a new EU framework for combatting financial crime. The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA), representing Europe’s leading online gambling operators, welcomes the Parliament’s approval of the new AML package and believes the incoming rule changes will strengthen the EU’s approach to tackling money laundering.

The new package will contain:

  • single rulebook regulation – with provisions on conducting due diligence on customers, transparency of beneficial owners and the use of crypto-assets.
  • The 6th Anti-Money Laundering Directive – containing national provisions on supervision and national AML authorities, as well as on the access of authorities to necessary and reliable information, e.g. beneficial ownership registers.
  • The establishment of the European Anti-Money Laundering Authority (AMLA) – which have supervisory and investigative powers to ensure compliance with AML requirements, operating in conjunction with national AML authorities.
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EGBA believes the new rules will benefit Europe’s online gambling operators by ensuring a consistent regulatory approach across EU member states. Another important feature, under the competence of AMLA, will be the creation of a harmonised reporting format for Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs). This will ensure that Europe’s online gambling operators encounter the same STR requirements across all EU member states, thereby setting clear and consistent expectations that will reduce administrative burdens and costs.

To assist online gambling operators in complying with the EU’s new AML rules, EGBA has developed industry-specific guidelines on anti-money laundering which apply a risk-based approach and include practical measures that operators can take – on customer and business risk assessments, customer due diligence processes, suspicious transaction reporting, and record keeping. EGBA members already apply the guidelines and submit annual reports to EGBA that summarise their progress in implementing its measures. The guidelines are also open to all operators based in the EU and EGBA encourages operators to sign up to them.

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The AML package now awaits formal adoption by the Council of the EU, expected in May, before being published in the EU’s Official Journal.

“We welcome the European Parliament’s approval of the new anti-money laundering package. The new framework will set high standards and ensure greater consistency in the application of AML rules across the EU. Online gambling operators, especially those operating in multiple countries, will benefit from a single rulebook and harmonised reporting requirements that will unravel national complexities. We will look to review our industry guidelines on AML to ensure their alignment with the new EU rules. By signing up to the guidelines, operators can already prepare themselves for the incoming changes in the EU rules and join our members in their efforts to proactively and positively contribute to the EU’s fight against money laundering.” – Dr. Ekaterina Hartmann, Director of Legal and Regulatory Affairs, EGBA.

 

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Source: EGBA

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