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EU Parliament Passes New Anti-Money Laundering Laws: Strengthening Defenses Against Financial Crime

European lawmakers hailed the passage of new anti-money laundering (AML) laws in the final plenary session of the current parliament, declaring that Europe "will no longer be an easy mark for money launderers." The legislation includes the establishment of the new Anti-Money Laundering Authority (AMLA) and a comprehensive AML Regulation.

EU Parliament Passes New Anti-Money Laundering Laws: Strengthening Defenses Against Financial Crime

Speculation had swirled in Brussels last week amid fears of last-minute amendments that could disrupt the legislative process. However, these concerns were alleviated as the laws were approved smoothly, without any hitches.

Renew Europe MEP Eva Maria Poptcheva, the Spanish rapporteur for AML, quashed rumors by congratulating Frankfurt on being selected as the seat for AMLA, emphasizing that objective criteria were employed for the agency's location selection.

Poptcheva highlighted the significance of the new laws, stating that they would fortify Europe's defenses against money laundering. She referenced past shortcomings, such as the Danske Bank scandal, where billions of euros of illicit funds were laundered, underscoring the need for robust AML measures.


The establishment of AMLA marks a pivotal step, as it will directly oversee the 40 financial entities deemed most vulnerable to exploitation by money launderers.

European Commissioner for Financial Services Mairead McGuinness was commended for her role in facilitating negotiations between Member States, parliamentarians, and Commission officials. She emphasized the breadth of the new laws, which encompass various sectors from cash transactions to cryptocurrency and real estate to football clubs.

The passage of these laws represents a culmination of three years of rigorous regulatory efforts aimed at enhancing Europe's AML framework. With AMLA in place and comprehensive regulations enacted, European authorities aim to significantly bolster their ability to combat financial crime and safeguard the integrity of the financial system.



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