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BSP, AMLC strengthen partnership

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THE BANGKO SENTRAL ng Pilipinas (BSP) renewed its partnership with the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) to ensure the Philippines will not be used as a money laundering site and is secure from terrorism financing.

The memorandum of agreement (MoA) signed by both parties on April 24 will implement the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2001 (AMLA) and the Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act of 2012 (TFPSA). The MoA updates the memorandum of understanding signed by the BSP and the AMLC in February 2007.

“As the country’s situation has evolved through time, the fight against money laundering and terrorism financing have changed, particularly in the effective implementation of the rules governing the administrative proceedings before the AMLC,” the AMLC said in a statement on Wednesday. “This MoA then represents another chapter of collaboration and information-sharing between the AMLC and the BSP.”

The AMLC noted that the recently passed Republic Act (RA) No. 11211 or the BSP Charter amendments mandate the BSP to include money service businesses, credit granting businesses and payment system operators to be included in its supervision. RA 11211 amends RA 7653 or the New Central Bank Act, which only mandated the BSP to supervise banks and quasi-banking operations of non-bank financial institutions.

Under the agreement, the central bank shall assist the AMLC in implementing the AMLA and the TFPSA by conducting inspection, examination, audit or other mechanisms deemed appropriate to monitor and assess compliance with Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorism Financing. The law allows AMLC to impose administrative sanctions for violations.

“The AMLC ensures that the Philippines will not be used as money laundering site for proceeds of any unlawful activity and that the Philippines is secure from terrorism financing,” the AMLC said. “The AMLC, therefore, is empowered to investigate money laundering and terrorism financing; prosecute these crimes; and cause the confiscation sanction of criminal proceeds.”