On 17 February 2022, the Council of the European Union (Council) published the European Central Bank’s (ECB) opinion on the European Commission’s proposed regulation establishing an EU authority for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AMLAR). In its opinion the ECB sets out both general and specific observations on the AMLAR. These include welcoming the creation of the AMLAR and standing ready to cooperate with it. The ECB also strongly supports broadening the criteria for identifying those entities that come within direct AMLAR supervision.
The proposed regulation establishing the AMLAR was part of a package of legislative proposals published by the Commission on 20 July 2021, with the aim of strengthening the EU’s rules on anti-money laundering (AML) and countering the financing of terrorism (CFT). The legislative package also included a proposal for a: (i) regulation on the prevention of the use of the financial system for the purposes of money laundering or terrorist financing (AML Regulation); (ii) sixth AML directive (Sixth MLD); (iii) regulation on information accompanying transfers of funds and certain crypto-assets.
On the same date the Council also published the ECB’s opinion on the Commission’s legislative proposal for the proposed AML Regulation and the Sixth MLD. Like its opinion on the AMLAR the ECB sets out general and specific observations on both legislative proposals.