Office of Foreign Assets Control

News & Analysis as of

"US Further Eases Burma Sanctions"

In response to Burma’s peaceful and competitive elections in November 2015, on May 18, 2016, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) further eased U.S. sanctions against Burma (Myanmar). These...more

New Economic Opportunities with Cuba Present Financial Rewards Along with Associated Compliance Challenges

The opening of Cuba to greater commercial and financial activity offers many possibilities for U.S. financial institutions but, with those possibilities, comes a responsibility to meet the complex compliance challenges that...more

Burma Sanctions Continue to Sunset (IRB No. 553)

On May 17, 2016, the Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") amended the Burmese Sanctions Regulations to broaden the scope of permissible trade with Burma. The Burma regulations, which have been amended piecemeal rather...more

Panama Papers Fallout: A Push for Transparency and Regulatory Reform - Sanctions Also Levied Against Several Panama-Based...

In the wake of the "Panama Papers" – the unprecedented leak of 11.5 million files from a Panamanian law firm that revealed thousands of names and addresses linked to offshore companies – the White House has announced several...more

US Further Liberalizes Burma Sanctions

On May 17, 2016, the US Department of Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) further eased the sanctions on Burma by issuing and expanding general licenses and removing certain parties from the Specially...more

United States Further Eases Economic Sanctions on Burma/Myanmar

The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) eased certain sanctions against Burma/Myanmar on May 17, 2016, including by allowing most transactions involving Burmese financial institutions....more

OFAC Further Amends Cuban Assets Control Regulations – President Obama Authorizes More Travel and U.S. Presence in Cuba

On March 16, 2016, in what could be the final set of amendments to the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR) under the Obama Administration, the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) published a final rule that further...more

Unintended Consequences of Sanctions Intensify Syrian Refugee Crisis

Last week I wrote about one of the unintended consequences of OFAC’s “scorched earth” enforcement policy against banks and payment processors, namely, the blocking of funds transfers where the memo or the transferee name...more

New sanctions impose further restrictions on North Korea

The United Nations, the European Union and United States recently expanded sanctions on North Korea, issuing new restrictions which impact the mineral, energy, shipping, banking, finance, and aviation industries. United...more

Waked Money Laundering Organization Sanctions: OFAC Issues General Licenses and Updates

On May 5, 2016, the U.S. Department of Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions against 77 entities and individuals associated with the Waked Money Laundering Organization (“Waked MLO,”...more

"FinCEN Finalizes Customer Due Diligence Rule Amid Other Actions to Enhance Financial Transparency"

In the wake of the Panama Papers controversy, the U.S. government has taken major steps this month to promote financial transparency. First, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) finalized its proposed rule issued...more

FinCrimes Update - April 2016 Summary, Volume 4, Issue 4

AML/BSA & OFAC: FINCEN ANNOUNCES DEPARTURE OF DIRECTOR CALVERY - On April 26, FinCEN announced the departure of Director Calvery. Commenting on Calvery’s accomplishments during her tenure as Director, the agency...more

Overview of US and EU Trade Sanctions

Overview of US and EU Trade Sanctions - Following is a summary of the current US and EU sanctions that restrict trade with and/or investment in certain countries, “Specially Designated Nationals” (SDNs) and “Blocked...more

Tackling a Panamanian Money Laundering Organization: OFAC Sanctions the Waked Money Laundering Organization, Colombia Arrests the...

OFAC Sanctions - On May 5, 2016, the U.S. Department of Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced sanctions against 77 entities and individuals associated with the Waked Money Laundering Organization...more

New Commerce Department Procedure Available for U.S. Cuba License Holders – It’s a Bit Hard to Find, But if You Need It, You Need...

We all know that export regulations cannot keep up with reality. Reforms are happening very quickly, especially regarding Cuba. So, here’s a new procedure we just discovered. Perhaps it can help you if you are ever similarity...more

Opening Iranian Skies: OFAC Issues General License I to Jumpstart the Commercial Aviation Industry, and Iran Tests its Ballistic...

The sanctions stranglehold on Iran is loosening as the Obama Administration continues to chip away at restrictions on the commercial passenger aircraft industry. Pursuant to the phased enactment of the Joint Comprehensive...more

The United States - Cuba Commercial Relationship Moves Forward

For the first time since 1978, a U.S. Cruise line sailed to and docked in Havana, Cuba. On May 2, 2016, Fathom, a Carnival Corporation brand, became the first U.S. cruise line to take advantage of regulatory changes...more

OFAC Updates Cuba-Related FAQ Document

On April 21, 2016, the Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) updated its FAQ document related to Cuba. This document contains answers to several questions regarding information about Cuba such as...more

OFAC Updates Cuba-Related Frequently Asked Questions

On April 21, OFAC updated its list of frequently asked questions related to Cuba. The updated document includes eight new FAQs clarifying (i) that Section 515.584(d) of the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR) permits...more

Red Notice Newsletter - April 2016

ANTICORRUPTION DEVELOPMENTS – Final Judgments Entered Against Seven Former DAP Employees; Four Ordered to Pay - The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced earlier this month that on April 6 and 7, 2016,...more

OFAC Issues Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations

On April 15, OFAC issued new regulations to implement the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Act of 2015. The regulations authorize the Secretary of the Treasury to prohibit U.S. financial institutions from opening...more

OFAC Provides Helpful New Guidance for Cuba

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) updated its FAQs for Cuba on April 21, 2016 with substantive guidance that addresses U-turn transactions, export policy, insurance, educational and humanitarian activities and...more

OFAC Adopts New Sanctions Targeting Hizballah’s Financial and Logistics Networks

If you only read one thing... - The Hizballah Financial Sanctions Regulations (HFSR) are intended to disrupt Hizballah’s global logistics and financial network by providing a new basis of secondary sanctions...more

OFAC Issues Burundi Sanctions Regulations

On April 14, OFAC issued the Burundi Sanctions Regulations, 31 CFR part 554 to implement the November 22, 2015 Executive Order 13712, “Blocking the Property of Certain persons Contributing to the Situation in Burundi.” OFAC...more

Hotels and Hospitality in Cuba: OFAC and Obama Paving the Way

With more flights, relaxing regulations, a historic presidential trip to Cuba, and news of hospitality services expanding into Cuba, the pathway into Cuba for hotels and hospitality companies seems smooth. But businesses...more

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