The S&D Group in the European Parliament welcomes the new legislative package presented by the European Commission today on anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing in the EU. The new package includes proposals for a new EU agency that is being created to fight money laundering, as well as new rules that will give teeth to the EU’s ability to enforce anti-money laundering laws and ensure that all EU countries apply the same rules.

Jonás Fernández, S&D spokesperson for economic affairs, said:                                   “The integrity of the EU’s financial system is at risk when it is only as strong as its weakest link. For too long a fragmented and badly coordinated system of national rules with varying degrees of enforcement has undermined our collective fight against money laundering. Today’s proposals are a step in the right direction and they answer our long standing calls for a single rulebook on anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing with uniform legislation overseen by an EU supervisor. The new proposals on crypto-assets in particular are a big step forward in a largely unregulated area. With rules making the transfer of virtual assets more transparent, we will be able to stop the crypto-currency market from becoming a hotbed for criminals to operate and profit from illicit money flows taking place in the shadows.”

Birgit Sippel, S&D spokesperson for justice and home affairs, said:                                “Financial crime easily crosses borders and for years we have been pointing out that national supervision of anti-money laundering is not working. The patchwork of national rules to stop money laundering in the EU continues to help criminals line their pockets from illegal activity. Today’s package to include the main aspects of the Anti-Money Laundering Directive in a new Regulation is therefore welcome news for properly enforcing the rules. Furthermore, the Anti-Money Laundering Authority is a long awaited proposal to ensure direct supervision over risky sectors and entities and to guarantee proper EU-wide supervision of anti-money laundering. In our role as co-legislators in the European Parliament, we will work on all aspects of the proposals to make ensure there are no loopholes in the legislation.”