Anti Money Laundering Compliance in UAE | AML Legislation
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Anti Money Laundering Compliance

Anti-money laundering legislation compliance is mandatory in United Arab Emirates for organizations that are at risk. UAE government, with the amendment of previous anti-money laundering (AML) regulations through Federal Decree (No 20) of 2018 on Anti-Money Laundering, has taken effective steps in combatting financial crime occurring in the country. At Farahat & Co, we provide end-to-end anti-money laundering (AML) solutions that meet the compliance obligations of business organizations operating in the UAE. In the recent years, AML penalties and audits have steadily increased. Protect your company from regulatory penalties through our comprehensive AML solutions!

Companies we’ve assisted with AML compliance in UAE who are affected with the legislation are as follows:

Designated non-financial businesses & professions (DNFBPs)

  • Real estate agents and brokers – when they are concluding operations for customers’ benefit with respect to purchase and/or sale of property and real estate
  • Notaries, law firms, and all other independent advocates and professionals – when preparing, executing, or conducting financial transactions for customers with respect to purchase and/or sale of property and real estate; the management of funds that ware owned by clients; the management of savings accounts, securities accounts, and bank accounts; organization of contributions for management, operation, or establishment of companies; selling and/or buying commercial legal entities; and creation, management or operation of legal arrangements or legal persons.
  • Dealers in previous stones and precious metals – in carrying out monetary transactions which appear equal or interrelated to more than Dhs55,000.
  • Providers of trusts and corporate services – upon executing or performing transactions on behalf of clients with respect to certain activities such as acting as agents in establishment or creation of legal persons; working to serve as secretary, director, or partner of a business; providing a work address, registered office, administrative address, or correspondence address of a legal arrangement or legal person; and equipping or working with another person in actin as the nominal shareholder in the favor of another legal person

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Offences and Penalties

Financial Institutions

(Business organizations that provide the activities listed below)

  • Credit facilities for different kinds
  • Receiving of deposits and all other funds which may be paid by consumers, including deposits according to the Islamic Sharia
  • Cash brokerage services
  • Money transfer services and currency exchange
  • Financial transactions in securities and financial leasing

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How our Experts will help you with AML Compliance

As AML laws in the country are becoming stringent, more businesses are seeking our seasoned AML professionals’ guidance and advisory with AML compliance, which involves the following:

Appointment of a compliance officer


The internal AML program of a company has to be overseen by an appointed compliance officer or money laundering reporting officer. The compliance offer will have sufficient authority and has to have the necessary expertise in carrying out the role effectively for an organization. A compliance officer also has to have extensive industry experience or experience within the financial sector, specifically AML compliance, and internal or legal risk audits. The appropriate certification is also a must. Our team providing AML solutions are approved by the major regulators in UAE. We also provide firms that are affected by AML regulations select a compliance officer who’ll be responsible in reporting suspicious activities.

Identifying, assessing, and understanding crime risks


Our AML professionals help DNFBPs and financial institution identify and asses their crime risks with respect to the nature and size of their respective organizations. This includes documenting the risk assessment operations, making them available when requested by the regulatory authorities, and keeping them updated on an ongoing basis; as well as considering relevant risk factors e.g., countries, geographic areas, and customers, and services, delivery channels, transactions, and products prior to determining levels of overall risk, including appropriate levels of mitigation required.

Development of internal policies, procedures, and controls


The firm helps business organizations in the UAE develop internal controls which commensurate with the size and nature of their businesses with the approval of senior management in order to help manage risk identified and monitor implementation of the policies, procedures, and controls.

Application of CDD measures


Apart from being mandatory, this is to enhance the management of high risks upon their identification. Our team carries out, on behalf of a company, the acquisition of information and investigation of information in relation to Beneficial Owner and Customer identity; updating customer due diligence (CDD) information of Beneficial Owner and Customer more systematically; taking reasonable measures in identifying source of funds of Beneficial Owner and Customer; and obtaining approval of senior management in commencing business relationship with company clients or customers.

To discuss with our AML team on how we can help ensure the full compliance of your business to relevant AML regulations, call us today!