The British Virgin Islands (BVI) is scheduled to undergo its Fourth Round of Mutual Evaluation by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) in 2017 based on the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) International Standards on Combating Money Laundering and the Financing of Terrorism and Proliferation.
Each member country of the FATF and its associated regional bodies are now required to ensure that they can identify and assess the risks associated with money laundering and terrorist financing and take action, including designation of an authority or mechanisms to coordinate the assessment of the identified risks, and apply resources aimed at effective risk mitigation.
In order to effectively manage this process, Cabinet established the National Risk Assessment Council to serve as the policy making body responsible for leading the way forward on significant policy issues in relation to the conduct of the National Risk Assessment (NRA). The National Risk Assessment Steering Group has also been established to act as the central coordinating body for the NRA with full responsibility for the preparation of the NRA framework and the conduct and review of the NRA. This exercise will help to prepare the Territory for its 2017 CFATF Mutual Evaluation at which time the results of the NRA will play a key role.
In addition, the Public Education Committee (PEC) has been established and charged with the task of educating the public on Anti-money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) matters. In accordance with this mandate, the PEC has created a brochure which provides essential information on the National Risk Assessment exercise, background on the origins and the framework of the FATF and details of the Territory’s legislative framework as regards AML/CFT.
As a part of the NRA, inspectors will be examining and testing various industry practitioners on various aspects of AML/CFT criteria. Harneys has a dedicated Regulatory Department and advises on all aspects of BVI regulatory law. We would be happy to assist any stakeholder with a review of their AML/CFT documentation and provide the necessary legal advisory services that may be required to ensure each stakeholder is in compliance with the AML/CFT obligations under applicable law and regulations.