BEIS consults on implementing the Fourth Money Laundering Directive

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) is seeking views on its discussion paper outlining possible approaches to the transposition of Article 30 of the Fourth Money Laundering Directive. This Article relates to the requirement for EU member states to maintain a central register of beneficial ownership information of corporate and other legal entities in their territory. The deadline for responses is 16 December 2016.money-finance-wealth-currency-68148
The EU adopted the directive on the prevention of the use of the financial system for the purposes of money laundering or terrorist financing (2015/849) (known as the Fourth Money Laundering Directive) in 2015. Member states are required to implement it in domestic law by June 2017.
Consultation 
HM Treasury published, on 15 September 2016, a consultation on the transposition of the Directive. The new consultation covers one specific part of the Directive: the requirement for EU member states to maintain a central register of beneficial ownership information on corporate and other legal entities in their territory and to allow access to the information they hold by law enforcement and other organisations which combat money laundering and other financial crimes.The UK already has a central register of this kind: companies and other entities are required to maintain a central register of persons with significant control, introduced by the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015. However, the requirements of the Directive are different from existing UK legislation. The discussion paper highlights those areas, and outlines possible ways for amending UK requirements to meet the UK's transposition obligations.

 

The consultation will be of interest to:

• companies and legal entities

• professional advisers and service providers for companies and legal entities

• others with an interest in who controls or influences companies and legal entities

Proposals

BEIS has highlighted the principal areas where it considers that it may be necessary to amend or supplement the existing UK framework:

• the scope of the entities required to obtain and hold information—which other types of entity should be required to disclose information on beneficial ownership

• the Directive’s definition of a ‘beneficial owner’ and the information that needs to be collected

• the Directive’s requirements on the quality of that information—that it should be ‘adequate, accurate and current’

• the provisions on access to information on beneficial ownership. BEIS intends to maintain its approach of having a fully public register of information on beneficial ownership, including for the types of entity brought within scope by the Directive

Ways to respond

The response form should be sent to:

Email: transparencyandtrust@beis.gov.uk

Post:  Transparency and Trust team, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, 1 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0ET

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